Thinking about a visual process library

I had a good conversation with Craig Flynn and Ian Garmaise over bowls of ramen at Kenzo. We talked about visual communication and business practices. Craig has been doing a lot of consulting and training based on Toyota management practices, and he’s interested in helping people improve their visual communication skills.

One of the tools Craig mentioned was the feedback or suggestion sheet – a single sheet of paper that describes how things currently are, how they can be improved, and other notes. The company might compile hundreds or of these sheets. A decision-maker would then review them, spending about ten seconds each to classify the suggestion as relevant, irrelevant, something to do right away, something to investigate later, and so on.

Craig talked about how his descriptions were more complicated and less elegant than the ones that his mentor made, and how he was learning to make his descriptions clearer and more visual.

Ten seconds is an interesting limit. My sketchnotes let me review meetups and books quickly (see my Evernote notebook or the slideshow on my blog). I can apply Craig’s idea to that process library I’ve been thinking of building for a while.

Process - Process review

Might be an excellent way to practice!

  • Cesar

    I would suggest you to try Trello. It fits really well that kind of visual workflow and is quite keyboard oriented.

  • John Tait

    I really like your handwriting.

  • Karl

    I guess you are already familiar with

    But what about this?

    I found his ideas and the book very inspiring …

  • Sacha Chua

    Karl: Oooh, that second link is super-useful. I love collections of techniques, examples, and visual metaphors. Thanks!

    John: Thanks!

    Cesar: Yes, Trello looks nifty. I like using Emacs for practically everything, but if I shift my workflow to the Web (or run into people who prefer that), Trello looks like a nifty tool.