The Transition Tree (TRT) Notation

Estimated reading time: 2 minutes.

Why use Transition Trees (TRTs)?

TRTs provide a detailed, step-by-step set of actions that are needed to implement the desired change within an organisation (from current reality to the desired future reality, as specified in the FRT). They also expand the elements identified in the PRT to overcome any anticipated obstacles. Uses 'If... Then...' to answer 'HOW TO CAUSE the change?'

TRT Notation Description

The diagram below describes the Notation's grammar.

The Transition Tree Notation Model

The Node Types in detail:

Node TypeDescriptionIs Starting PointSuccessors
Undesirable EffectUndesirable Effects (UDE) are the Starting Node Types for current reality trees. List them first, suggestion is between 5-10. They are caused by other effects of causes.YesAll Effects incl. 'And'
Intermediate EffectEffects that are neither negative or positive on their own. They are caused by other effects or causes.NoAll Effects incl. 'And'
DesirableEffectA wanted effect. Let's reinforce this one and cut the negative consequences. They are caused by other effects or causes.NoAll Effects incl. 'And'
GivenGiven entities are out of your sphere of influence. They are therefore sometimes called Preconditions. These are always entries to the tree (no predecessors). E.g. Gravity is given and unless you leave earth a given force.NoAll Effects incl. 'And'
ChangeableChangeable entities are those causes that can be changed and should be changed in order to mitigate the problems from occurring (again).NoAll Effects incl. 'And'
And JunctorNormally in a sufficient cause diagram each cause is alone to create connected effects. The 'And' Junctor connects two causes in order to express that something only happens if both causes are taking place.NoAll Effects (excl. 'And')

The Notation setting will highlight those effects (desirable, undesirable or intermediate incl. And Junctor) that are connected to a cause. This way the not-yet-connected effects are highlighted, so you can focus on them.

Background Information on TRT Notation

TRT diagrams were developed as part of the Theory of Constraints by E. Goldratt. More on the Theory of Constraints can be found here.