Are you on Track? Strategy Development and Deployment using the X-Matrix
The X Matrix is an integral part of Hoshin Planning, an annual planning and deployment process that originated in Japan. Companies like Komatsu, Toyota, Nippon Denso and others perfected Hoshin Planning in the 1960s. In India, organizations like HP India, Amul (Gujarat Co-operative Milk Marketing Federation), Aditya Birla Group, SRF Ltd etc have also adopted Hoshin Kanri.
It is a strategy deployment tool used to compare two pairs of complementary lists. It has four quadrants, which represent objectives, strategies, deliverables and timeline. Each pair occupies diagonally opposite quadrants of the matrix as they have no common items and need no comparison.
An X-Matrix is drawn at every level of planning or strategy deployment. It combines the what, who, when, how and how much elements of a plan. The matrix is reviewed and updated usually on a monthly basis. The ‘traffic light’ section of the matrix is updated as green (on time), yellow (slipping) and red (late) depending on the changing action status. Other elements are modified after proper review and approval.
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