The Matrix in a Matrix: A Powerful Tool for Holistic Business Architecture


In the realm of business architecture, achieving seamless alignment between an organization’s purpose, strategic objectives, value chains, and capabilities is a constant pursuit. The traditional methods of cataloging may fall short in capturing the intricate relationships and dependencies between these components. However, there exists a transformative approach—the matrix in a matrix—that empowers business architects to visualize these connections effectively. In this article, we delve into the power of the matrix in a matrix, its four components, and how it serves as a powerful tool for driving holistic business architecture.

Understanding the Four Components of the Matrix in a Matrix

Purpose and Ambition:

At the top left corner of the matrix lies the organization’s purpose and ambition—the driving force behind its existence. This overarching vision sets the stage for all subsequent components, providing a clear direction for the organization’s strategic endeavors.

Strategic Objectives:

Aligned with the purpose, the x-axis of the matrix features the company’s strategic objectives. These objectives serve as milestones that guide the organization toward realizing its purpose. Placing them horizontally in the matrix ensures a strategic alignment throughout the architecture.

Value Chains:

The y-axis of the matrix represents the value chains or value streams—the series of activities required to create and deliver value to customers. These value chains encompass the core functions and processes that drive the organization’s success. Identifying them vertically in the matrix highlights their significance in achieving strategic objectives.


At the intersecting points of the matrix, lie the capabilities required to execute each strategic objective. These capabilities represent the unique strengths that the organization possesses or needs to develop to fulfill its ambitions successfully.

Driving Holistic Business Architecture

The matrix in a matrix goes beyond the traditional cataloging approach. It connects the dots between purpose, strategic objectives, value chains, and capabilities, fostering a holistic understanding of the organization’s architecture.

Establishing Strategic Alignment

By linking strategic objectives with value chains and capabilities, business architects gain clarity on how each objective is supported by specific value-adding processes and capabilities.

Identifying Critical Capabilities

Understanding the capabilities required to achieve each strategic objective empowers organizations to focus on developing and optimizing the most critical capabilities that drive value delivery.

Designing for Outcomes

Taking each capability to the next level matrix, architects can define the top outcomes they aim to achieve. Aligning these outcomes with components such as people, processes, technology, and governance allows for a targeted approach to implementation.

Enhancing Decision-making

The matrix in a matrix provides a systematic view that aids informed decision-making. Architects can assess the impact of decisions on various components, ensuring alignment with the organization’s purpose and strategic direction.


The matrix in a matrix approach stands as a powerful tool for business architects, offering a comprehensive and interconnected view of an organization’s purpose, strategic objectives, value chains, and capabilities. By understanding the relationships between these components, business architects can drive holistic business architecture, fostering strategic alignment, identifying critical capabilities, and making informed decisions. Embracing the matrix in a matrix empowers organizations to navigate complexity with clarity, unlocking their full potential and charting a path towards sustained success.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

We use cookies to enhance your experience on our website. By continuing to use this website you agree to the policies set out by Scientrix.