All posts in “visual thinking”

What word sums up high-quality graphic recording?

There is a lot of focus within the graphic recording community about what constitutes good recording and what do we call ourselves and what do we really offer our clients. These are all important conversations and we support those discussions. That said, I helped train Meeting Magic’s Advanced Facilitation workshop these past few days. Interestingly, none of those topics came up from our clients. But there was one word we kept hearing and talking about.

Complexity! Continue Reading…

Visible or invisible. That is the question.

The best graphic recording is there to serve the group. Scribing in meetings is there to add value to your conversations, strengthen commitment to outcomes, and support the group getting to action. Graphic recording is there to help you get your job done.

A recent question we’ve been addressing is how visible is the graphic recorder? How ‘up front’ should the recording itself be? Is the chart front and center for the group to engage? Is the chart in the back of the room capturing a record, much like taking visual minutes of meetings?

This is all important stuff to work out ahead of time with the meeting sponsor, leader or facilitator. We have a series of questions we ask before the meeting. How will you use this graphic recording going forward or is it only to be used by the group in question? What is the role of the recorder in this session? Why are you including graphics in this meeting? Will this specific chart be used again by this group?

Key questions that impact the group and their work are important for the graphic recorder to engage. Planning ahead for including scribing in meetings will create time and thought for how to best utilise graphic and the recorder. Waiting until the last minute to have recording as an add on might add a pretty picture but risks making visual thinking an afterthought rather than a key component to having a successful meeting.

To learn more about making your work visible and knowing how and where to place your graphic recorder, give us a call (+44 (0)1628 471 114 or email us to begin a conversation about graphic recording in your meetings.

What to do when transparency and clarity go opaque.

We frequently see rows of binders on shelves in our clients offices. The titles reveal a lot. These range from ‘Strategy 2020’ to ‘2013 Business Review’ to ‘Regional Action Plans’ and etc. etc. etc. What happened with these reports? Who created them and why? How much time and resource was spent creating these reports? Are they still being used and referenced? What was learned? What was not learned?

Equally, groups and organisations are increasingly talking about transparency and clarity in their work and with their stakeholders. Continue Reading…

How do you sustain institutional knowledge?

One of the major challenges organisations face in our modern, fast-paced, ever-changing world is sustaining, and indeed, improving institutional knowledge. How do individuals, groups, teams, managers and leaders stay on top of the mountains of information, conversations, data and input in a way that helps the organisation stay in touch with what it knows.

One answer is reports. Another is white papers. Another is keeping mounds of card deck presentations. And so it goes. Keeping it all together and in a way that is useful is nearly impossible, it would seem. Continue Reading…

What’s happened to leadership and why am I so flustered?

Leadership used to be a rung on the ladder of success. People aspired to leadership, especially after working hard in the trenches learning a thing or two developing skills and knowledge and even a bit of wisdom. Being the next great leader who would change the world, or at least one small bit of it, was a goal that demonstrated initiative and desire for advancement. Continue Reading…

Why WHY? It’s a loop.

We live in a HOW world. How do we do this? How do we accomplish that? How can I get work done now? How can I project manage this, that and the other thing? From how of learning to the how of work plans and actions. How dominates the landscape and drives most business decisions.

But there is a huge gap in that landscape.

Continue Reading…

How does your team stack up visually?

When you think about your team or work group, or indeed, your organisation, and when you think about working visually or graphically as a group, what do you notice?

How does each group member engage in meetings and how do they tend to take notes for themselves? Do they talk in simile or metaphor? “This job is like a bridge to my future.” “When we talk about change I see huge walls blocking us.”

Listen to the language your team uses during meetings. Watch how they take notes. Or do the doodle (maybe when you think they should be listening attentively.) Are they vocal? Quiet?

Observing your team can tell you a lot about how they are engaging with information and data. For instance, doodlers tend to be visual thinkers, and maybe kinesthetic as well. They need to engage the visual, creative side of their brain in order to process information. The kinesthetic doodlers needs be moving in order to engage their brains.

Working visually and graphically can engage all learning types and can broaden and deepen understanding and engagement. How to do that is the question. Using a graphic recording or meeting scribe can help. Using template that your team fills in can help as well. There are lots of solutions we can assist you with in planning your agendas to reach those critical outcomes. Draw us a verbal picture and we’ll help you engage your team fully.