Visual facilitation is a powerful tool for hosting productive meetings and eliciting content for strategic planning, branding, and organizational development.
People respond to the hands-on immediacy of strategic visuals. Rather than passively hearing a lecture or seeing a PowerPoint presentation, participants are literally “drawn in” by the visual and metaphoric language of large murals. When they see the meeting content visualized, whether captured from a presenter or a group discussion, participants become more active in listening, reflecting, and contributing. The visual practitioner depicts the synergy of the group.
The visual practitioner distills content for further envisioning, strategic followup, and consensus-building among stakeholders, project teams, and others. Images are inspired by participants’ comments and are used to rope ideas together, populate a landscape, make creative leaps, and move discussion deeper into issues or broader into innovation.
Visual thinking, strategic visualization, and hands-on visual storytelling deepen creative process, draw out visions, and move those visions to reality.
Visualization serves organizations for:
- Executive & stakeholder initiatives
- Leadership retreats & forums
- Keynotes & breakout sessions
- Conferences & offsites
- Mission envisioning & focusing
- Strategic & long-range planning
- Identity development, branding & messaging
- New product or program development
- Product & service positioning
- Project management
- Team building
- Marketing and social media strategy
FOCUS ON VISION & GOALS
WIth visuals, group participation is visible and tangible. The murals encourage an atmosphere of creativity and collaboration: “We’re all in this together!” Because the murals extract metaphor and build upon others’ suggestions in a visual language, participants don’t get bogged down in details, agendas, or tasks before visions and goals are clear. Murals created during a retreat or event can be used later the same day or the next to spark more ideas and suggestions and to underpin further research, questioning, agenda planning, and task assignment.
Murals drawn in real time as meetings progress are an excellent way to capture the “Big Picture.” Particularly useful in envisioning and strategic planning processes, murals get everyone “on the same page.” Visuals structure thinking outside of parameters that often impeded innovation. The practitioner captures individual comments as well as “group thinking,” which may be felt and sensed in the room, but not clearly articulated by any one person.
- Leaders in the habit of making top-down decisions can explore possibilities in the low-risk, level playing field of a paper mural as a preliminary to preparing proposals, presentations, reports and agendas.
- Managers who are tasked to be results-oriented can see quickly where new approaches might lead.
- Groups assembled to discuss issues and set strategies, whether for future planning, product development, or team-building, find strategic visualization a productive process for making the most of participants’ time together.
- Entrepreneurs, small business owners, artists, writers, and others on creative journeys find immense value in envisioning their dreams, seeing juxtapositions of their thoughts, articulating clear goals, and mapping routes to success.
- Individuals going through career changes or personal transformation find clarity and guidance for realizing dreams.
Contact Christine Walker, MA, MFA