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Graphic Recording: A Person-Centred Tool

Did you know approximately 65% of people are visual learners? Along with helping boost memory retention, visual learning helps teams be actively engaged in meaningful discussions by fostering emotional investment.

We use a tool called Graphic Recording to effectively engage groups by transforming conversations, ideas, and processes into visuals and key findings as they occur. This visualization tool creates group ownership of a process, and so much more can be captured – emotions, process, anonymous contributions, representation of diversity – than in a black and white typed document.

In this week’s Innovation Hour, we’re challenging you to consider how graphic recording might transform your online meetings from disconnected to reinvigorated..

A live graphic recording done by Maggie Miland for the 2018 BLD Western Canada Conference

What’s Innovation Hour?

Sometimes, it can be easy to fall into a comfortable box at work – you focus on just your work and stay only inside your bubble (ex. HR, tech, research, client outreach, etc.). Obviously, focusing on your work is by no means a bad thing. But when you only think and communicate only on topics within your bubble 40 hours a week, 50 out of 52 weeks a year, it can really stifle a person’s curiosity and creativity.

So we started hosting Innovation Hour, a bi-weekly hour dedicated to our entire team exploring new topics, exercising our innovation muscles, and widening our perspectives. We’ve covered a wide scope of topics: a TED Talk on creative confidence, climate change, living wage, and more. Our Talent, Culture, and Performance Strategy was actually born during an Innovation Hour session!

As we’ve shared what Innovation Hour is with our friends and clients, we’ve been met with resounding excitement and interest. To help you host your own Innovation Hour with your teams, we’ll be sharing prompts and resources to help kick off discussions. We can’t wait to hear where your team’s creativity and passion takes you!

Download the full high-resolution pdf

Innovation Hour: Scenario

Working in pairs, each person will pick a story prompt while the other practices visualizing the story by following the 4 steps of Graphic Recording (outlined in the framework below).

Don’t be afraid if you “can’t draw”, and don’t let it shy you away from your creativity. Dan Roam, author of The Back of the Napkin and expert in visual thinking, believes you to draw anything with 5 basic shapes: a line, a square, a circle, a triangle, and an irregular shape he calls a blob.

Visualizing the discussions around you helps you and your colleagues keep your ideation and innovation people-centred. Visuals are fun and make people excited to engage in the vibrant discussion before their eyes. While plain text can be a barrier when ideating with groups with diverse language backgrounds, graphics are universally understood and foster accessible collaboration. Graphic recording can also reveal connections between ideas that might otherwise have gone unnoticed as well as promote creative thinking, collaboration, and deeper engagement.

Innovation Hour: Tools

We developed a session framework to help guide you through your own feedback practice.

Want to share this Innovation Hour with your team? Download our free high-resolution card with all of the session info on it!

Innovation Hour: Extra Reading

Enjoying this week’s topic and want to dive in deeper? Here are some other articles we found interesting and were inspired by:

What is graphic recording?

How to draw anything.

We hope this inspired some fun and creative discussions with your team. Want to have Innovation Hour prompts delivered to your inbox directly? Sign up for our Innovation Hour list!