Our programmes have been created to help people navigate the challenges of working together through change. They were born out of a simple conversation to bring visual collaboration to a design challenge.
Our workshops often form part of a bigger conversation around working culture. Providing a collective and systemic language can be more effective than individual up-skilling. Different organisations require different strategies. Our three part programme is a great start, get in touch to find out more.
I can't draw and I'm embarrassed by my drawings
Then you won't be alone and quite frankly it's not surprising if you haven't practised since you were 9. You won't be the only one to feel this way. Luckily, visual thinking is not about being a great technical artist (phew). Our courses are all about how you think and communicate with fluency. Part of that is building confidence and a visual toolkit, the rest is your creativity. We create a safe and playful space to overcome any fears you have around drawing.
I think in a visual way, but my some of my team avoid it. Would this work for my team?
So you might be a champion but your team are showing some resistance. Perhaps they are afraid of looking silly. It may also be that they have mastered the art of linear thinking, the one celebrated in our schools and culture. Why would they want to change? Visual thinking is a language and not everyone needs to be a master of it. If you want to introduce a powerful way of thinking and generating then it is helpful for everyone to understand the structure of it. Everybody will benefit in some way without question, it's such a diverse field. Which is great because it means your team grows in the diversity of its capabilities.
We are not designers but we want to get better at communicating with each other, would this still work for us?
Absolutely. You may not call yourself a designer but if your job is to turn information in to something then you are using design thinking. Visual thinking is particularly good at improving communication. A drawing gives a centre of gravity for a conversation, a chance for someone to say 'yes, like that' or 'not quite, perhaps with more of x [pen moves messily on roll of paper].'
We want to use visuals more but we're worried about our bosses thinking we are not taking our work seriously.
Some will judge, that is the truth, though that is in old-fashioned change resistant cultures. In our experience, the bosses love it. They understand what you mean now and they themselves come searching to learn these skills. The good ones want to learn and are willing to go on the learning path with you, even if it means their visual articulation and verbal articulation don't match at the beginning.
Does this actually work? What are the outcomes?
Yes, though you'll need to be a. committed, b. have visual champions, c. practise. When you learn a language there will be some growing pains. The frustrating moments when you are building your visual literacy and you can't access the right imagery or you are on the spot and suddenly feel afraid again. That's why you need internal champions to support you and you need to practise before it becomes second nature. If you do, the outcomes are phenomenal. We've seen teams have significantly more productive conversations, stakeholders supporting decisions with ease and design teams significantly improve the quality and freshness of their output. This way they have the tools to hear their talent.
We haven't heard of this type of training before, is it widely recognised?
Thinking visually has been around since the birth of consciousness, though using our visual and spatial capabilities to navigate change is fairly new. The truth is we think this is game-changing stuff, you won't find this anywhere else. It is a beautiful compliment and cross-over with 'design thinking' coined by David Kelley (IDEO) in the 90s. Our culture is at a tipping point, where this type of thinking is required and going to be better integrated in to the current linear model. Our advice is that you'll know instinctively if it is for you, do reach out with any questions or curiosities.
Our teams have some specific needs/problems, are you able to include this?
Absolutely, we always start with a conversation about the specific needs of your organisation, business or culture. Get in touch to find out more.
Here are some of the principles behind how the courses are structured.
1. Playfully unattached
People need to be enjoying themselves when they are learning. Being unattached to the outcome, creates far richer and more creative results.
2. Group participation
Most of your learning comes from others. A safe space to learn is fundamental.
3. Beginners mind
We encourage a child-like beginners mindset, where we leave any of our judgement at the door.
4. Personal voice
Everybody has something unique to say in a unique way. Our aim is to facilitate an environment where people get to see know their voice a bit more.
5. Curious about change
Either you get driven by fear or you invite it along for the ride. We prefer the invitation.