Is-Is Not Matrix

The Is-Is Not matrix is a great tool for problem-solving, that I usually recommend to help frame the problem. It is based on the 5W2H methodology and then asks the question of what is different between the problem and what has been going right.

ISIS NOT
WhatWhat specific objects have the deviation? What is the specific deviation?What similar object(s) could reasonably have the deviation, but does not? What other deviations could reasonably be observed, but are not?
WhereWhere is the object when the deviation is observed (geographically)? Where is the deviation on the object?Where else could the object be when the deviations are observed but are not? Where else could the deviation be located on the object, but is not?
WhenWhen was the deviation observed first (in clock and calendar time)? When since that time has the deviation been observed? Any pattern? When, in the object’s history or life cycle, was the deviation observed first?When else could the deviation have been observed, but was not? When since that time could the deviation have been observed, but was not? When else, in the object’s history or life cycle, could the deviation have been observed first, but was not?
ExtentHow many objects have the deviation? What is the size of a single deviation? How many deviations are on each object? What is the trend? (…in the object?) (…in the number of occurrences of the deviation?) (…in the size of the deviation?)How many objects could have the deviation, but do not? What other size could the deviation be, but is not? How many deviations could there be on each object, but are not? What could be the trend, but is not? (…in the object?) (…in the number of occurrences of the deviation?) (…in the size of the deviation?)
WhoWho is involved (avoid blame, stick to roles, shifts, etc) To whom, by whom, near whom does this occurWho is not involved? Is there a trend of a specific role, shift, or another distinguishing factor?
Is-Is Not Matrix

Here is a template for use.

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