Visual Thinking In Business
What is Visual Thinking?
Visual thinking is quickly gaining popularity as a means to help solve large, complex problems and uncover innovative solutions. It encompasses a variety of techniques for representing ideas using words, pictures and symbols. These diagrams appeal to both the right and left sides of the brain, allowing them to convey both meaning and context. As a result, it can be used to communicate information faster and with great impact.
Are you a Visual Thinker?
A practical example: You are announcing a new organizational structure to your employees. Verbally, you begin to inform the staff where they report and how the new business teams are formed. It’s impossible to absorb all of that information verbally, it’s confusing. However, when someone finally draws a flow chart on a white board, the solution suddenly becomes clear.
Certainly science has more complex examples that have been tested and studied. But we don’t have to wait for science to know that visual thinking adds huge value to our conversations and interactions.
It all makes sense, really. Sometimes business challenges are multi-faceted and complex, making it hard for executives to clearly articulate what is on their minds. Also, words are often imprecise and open to interpretation by team members. Transferring this information to paper in a more symbolic form will help to make the information more understandable. As a result, teams can often develop better and faster solutions having visual thinking techniques.
In closing, visual thinking is one of the most powerful tools you can add to your skill set. It can help you to increase your influence and impact in your work and, more importantly, differentiate you in the eyes of the people whom you serve.
Here are a few books that can help you start perfecting your visual thinking technique:
- The Back of the Napkin: Solving Problems and Selling Ideas with Pictures – Dan Roam
- Unfolding the Napkin: The Hands-On Method for Solving Complex Problems with Simple Pictures – Dan Roam
- Blah Blah Blah: What To Do When Words Don’t Work – Dan Roam
- Visual Meetings: How Graphics, Sticky Notes and Idea Mapping Can Transform Group Productivity – David Sibbett
- Mind Maps for Business: Revolutionize Your Business Thinking and Practice– Tony Buzan