If you've never head of the term 'mind map' then you might think I have gone a little potty - don't worry I forgive you but here's the thing - they are a fantastic problem solving tool. They can be used across settings, across gender, to tackle large tasks, to aid in goal achievement...
But I get it - you're still none the wiser to what I am alluding to - so here goes in making it really simple for you.
A mind map is:
"...a graphical way to represent ideas and concepts. It is a visual thinking tool that helps structuring information, helping you to better analyze, comprehend, synthesize, recall and generate new ideas. Just as in every great idea, its power lies in its simplicity." (Litemind.com 2007)
Great stuff - now we're all on the same page. Now to tackle this question which has no doubt just popped into your mind - "why on earth would I want to use one?"
It's simple - they really help you get to grips with a task, problem goal, idea... and enable you to work out the exact steps you need to take in order to achieve, complete, succeed... in whatever you were trying to do.
More importantly - they keep you focused on the 'end goal', enable you to stop becoming bogged down in all the nitty gritty and they look great on an office wall!
As a manager, team leader or supervisor compiling a mind map with your team enables you to divide work appropriately at the beginning, and then enables you routinely to check your teams progress. By relating everything back to the 'end-goal' you enable your team to feel part of something (and this in turn supercharges their motivation).
Imagine if instead of handing over a big wad of paper covered in dust (i.e., that business plan you created all those years ago...), to the bank manager and instead unrolling a piece of A0 paper covered in ideas, goals and a plan of action... OK so admittedly they are likely to be unimpressed but if that same piece of A) paper is on a blank office wall - how much more likely are you going to stick to it, and achieve what you planned? If you have to walk past it every day, every time you go for a cup of tea it's there - judging you, and your lack of action...
Even if your not 'crafty' it can be fun - just don't loose the lid off the glitter :)
If you enjoyed this, and have 30 minutes to spare why not jump over and instantly access the free webinar on increasing employee motivation productivity - where you will learn a lot more on how to support your team to success. Just click the button below to register.
Katie Woodland - A developmental, and holistic psychologist who specialises in educating and empowering individuals, business leaders & school teachers to remove mental health as a barrier to success.
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