Do whiteboards make us more innovative?

While attending a monotonous and mundane meeting one day - I couldn't help but notice one of my highly intellectual and visual thinking, team member who was engaged in a serious drawing activity. At first glance - it appeared to be a visual note-taking exercise! (more on this at the end...)

When senior management tries to improve innovation within the teams - it is sometimes a sign of peer pressure or tough competition. Human beings, by nature are resistant to change and being asked for more innovation doesn't produce easy results.

Typical organizations have numerous meetings and yet very few people draw stuff while staying engaged within the conversation.

Research shows that warm and balanced communication has proven effectiveness.
When embarking on a journey towards a culture of innovation - try some of the following basics:

  • Convert all office walls (especially meeting rooms) into white boards.
  • Have plenty of markers available.
  • Conduct meetings next to these boards.
  • Make it a habit to draw pictures, add annotation & ask others to contribute.
Coming back to the story we started with:
(...) upon closer look - the visual thinking intellectual was actually trying to draw a cartoon character from the memory. Without drawings and bullet points - the meeting was a complete waste of time for her.

The richness in communication channel is marked highest with face-to-face whiteboard communication, however - it does not ensure that the audience will be more innovative.

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Thank you very much for the insights and suggestions.

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