I’d forgotten what a fantastic process mind mapping is.
I read Tony Buzan’s book years ago and was, for a short while, an avid user. Then I stopped.
My reawakening came earlier today when I did some work with a client and another specialist supplier, M62 Visual Communications, on reviewing the content, flow and messages contained in a mammoth slide deck.
M62 recommended we use Mindjet software to capture our thinking. This resulted in the rapid creation of a series of mind maps which will now help us restructure the material, simplfy our messages and ensure there is a clear, logical flow to the overall presentation and the other communication materials that will flow from it.
It’s a tool I commend to fellow communicators.
In our jobs it’s far too easy to get sucked into the detail and to lose sight of the big picture. Using Powerpoint to capture your thinking (in an inevitably linear fashion) isn’t the answer, yet it’s what some many of us rely on.
Mind mapping is far superior. It’s a great tool for capturing thoughts, mapping out messages and, perhaps most importantly, illustrating the multiple connections between different pieces of information. After all, so much of what we do is about alignment (in this case between different ‘layers’ of strategy – group, business unit and function) and flow (e.g. a timeline for rolling out various programmes of work).
If you’re interested in finding out more, check out the following websites:
- The Wikipedia entry on mind maps
- A useful overview from Derby University
- Illumine, a UK training company that focuses on mind mapping
- Mindjet – superb mind mapping software on Mac and PC
I’ll definitely be investing in a copy of Mind Manager Pro and using it to capture and clarify my thinking from now on.