Shared on
October 8, 2019
Any Phase
Any data

The 🏆 for the simplest and most versatile of frameworks goes to the 2x2.

You probably recognize it from your favorite PM who mapped features against value & effort for prioritization. 🙃

It’s incredibly useful pretty much any time during the design process to:

  • Stress test and pull apart research data
  • Externalize & structure conversation during synthesis (with your team or users)
  • Prioritization of ideas
  • Visualize affinity & likeness between people & things

How to use it ✨

Choose two opposing characteristics on either end of a spectrum. Label them at the x and y axis.

Plot data in the quadrants based on where they fall on the spectrum, talking through it out loud. It should be informed by direct observations from research, but it’s ok to trust your gut. Do what feels true and honest in that moment.

Depending on your goal of the exercise is, you should see patterns and clusters forming and even distribution across the 2x2.  If there isn’t enough coverage across the 2x2, it needs more tension.

Output of a 2x2 framework varies depending on how you use it, from insights to prioritization and everything in between.

Some ways to use 2x2s:

  • Plot personas against combinations of personality and behavioral traits, like motivation, confidence, anxiety.
  • Prioritize features in a product against urgency & frequency.
  • Map ideas generated in a brainstorming session against originality and feasibility

Keep playing around with your x and y axis- there’s no right way to do it. You’re looking for a 2x2 combination that creates a healthy tension and yields meaningful insights, turning into opportunities to design against.

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