How Now WowHow Now Wow

How Now Wow Matrix Template

Brainstorm and organize ideas based on their originality and ease of implementation.

About the How Now Wow matrix template

What is How Now Wow?

Brainstorming is difficult — but it becomes increasingly difficult as you scale. As you release more and more innovative products and services, it’s harder for your team to get creative. Complicated workflows, hard judgment calls, and resource constraints often force you to be conservative when you’d rather take risks. To overcome this challenge and reinvigorate your team, you can use the How Now Wow matrix.

The How Now Wow matrix is a game that fosters creativity. It consists of a 2x2 matrix with “originality” on the X-axis and “feasibility” on the Y-axis. You work with your team to file your ideas into each category. Working through the matrix can empower you to overcome creative roadblocks. 

How do you use the How Now Wow matrix?

The horizontal axis represents originality and rates ideas as normal or innovative. The vertical axis represents ease of implementation and rates ideas as easy or difficult to implement. Ideas that are unoriginal and challenging probably aren’t worth pursuing. “How” ideas that are innovative but difficult to execute may need further work before you can act upon them. “Now” ideas are generally considered low-hanging fruit. “Wow” ideas are both innovative and relatively easy to implement, so this is where you’ll want to try to focus your attention.

The 3 Aspects of How Now Wow

  1. How: Difficult to implement.

  2. This category consists of ideas that are innovative but infeasible. It’s a helpful way to set ambitious goals for the future.

  3. Now: Easy to implement.

  4. These ideas are familiar, so you know they work well.

  5. Wow: Original and easy to implement.

  6. This category describes creative ideas that are relatively simple to execute. Try to file as many ideas into this category as possible.

Who can use the How Now Wow matrix?

The How Now Wow matrix is versatile enough to be used by any number of teams. Use it whenever you’d like to encourage your team to do creative brainstorming. In order to encourage maximum creativity, you may find it beneficial to break teams into smaller groups or let people brainstorm individually before sharing their ideas with a larger group.

How Now Wow Matrix Template

Get started with this template right now. It’s free

Related Templates
Burndown Chart ThumbnailBurndown Chart Thumbnail
Preview

Burndown Chart

Whoa whoa whoa, pace yourself! That means knowing how much work is left—and, based on the delivery date, how much time you’ll have for each task. Perfect for project managers, Burndown Charts create a clear visualization of a team’s remaining work to help get it done on time and on budget. These charts have other big benefits, too. They encourage transparency and help individual team members be aware of their work pace so they can adjust or maintain it.

Burndown Chart
stickies-packs-thumb-web (1)stickies-packs-thumb-web (1)
Preview

Stickies Packs

Sticky notes are a popular feature of any virtual, hybrid, or in-person brainstorming session. Participants can use sticky notes to submit, sort, or vote for ideas -- and much more. Use the Stickies Packs template to customize groups of sticky notes for your participants. You can then break your participants into groups according to the color of their sticky notes, or categorize ideas based on color, and so on. The Stickies Packs template empowers you to create brainstorming sessions that fit your needs and align with your goals.

Stickies Packs
Wardley Map ThumbnailWardley Map Thumbnail
Preview

Wardley Mapping Canvas

A Wardley Map represents the landscape in which a business operates. It's made up of a value chain (the activities required to fulfill user needs) graphed against the evolution of individual activities over time. You place components with value on the y-axis and commodity on the x-axis. Use a Wardley Map to understand shared assumptions about your environment and discover what strategic options are available. Easily communicate your understanding of the landscape to your team, new hires, and stakeholders.

Wardley Mapping Canvas
Work Breakdown ThumbnailWork Breakdown Thumbnail
Preview

Work Breakdown Structure

A work breakdown is a project management tool that lays out everything you must accomplish to complete a project. It organizes these tasks into multiple levels and displays each element graphically. Creating a work breakdown is a deliverable-based approach, meaning you’ll end up with a detailed project plan of the deliverables you must create to finish the job. Create a Work Breakdown Structure when you need to deconstruct your team's work into smaller, well-defined elements to make it more manageable.

Work Breakdown Structure
Disney Creative Strategy ThumbnailDisney Creative Strategy Thumbnail
Preview

Disney Creative Strategy

Know who knew a little something about coming up with ideas that set imaginations alight? Walt Disney. And he inspired the Disney Creative Strategy, an approach that establishes three types of thinkers—dreamers, realists, and critics—and gives each the space to do clear thinking. Your team will go through an engaging exercise of adopting the three mindsets, where they’ll focus on a specific aspect of the idea. The Disney Creative Strategy has a way of yielding brilliant ideas and great products. That’s why it’s used successfully by organizations of all kinds and sizes.

Disney Creative Strategy
What So What Now What ThumbnailWhat So What Now What Thumbnail
Preview

What? So What? Now What?

The What? So What? Now What? Framework empowers you to uncover gaps in your understanding and learn from others’ perspectives. You can use the What? So What? Now What? Template to guide yourself or a group through a reflection exercise. Begin by thinking of a specific event or situation. During each phase, ask guiding questions to help participants reflect on their thoughts and experience. Working with your team, you can then utilize the template to record your ideas and to guide the experience.

What? So What? Now What?