A few years ago, I was working on a large sales opportunity with AT&T. During our first meeting with them we had a lot of discussion about the requirements for the project, what the users were trying to get out of it, technical details of the systems & integration points & so forth. I spent most of my time at the white board sketching out a rough diagram, the way our new system would interconnect to their existing systems. The diagram was recreated in Visio and became a feature of every subsequent meeting, the basis of every discussion about integration and interconnection, with changes continually incorporated. And reviewing the diagram became the way we'd orient new people to the project.
After that, we required a similar diagram be created for each project and be included in every proposal.
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