Over the last few years mind mapping has been recognized by companies as an effective communication tool that improves brainstorming and collaboration sessions. By visualizing concepts and connections in a Mind Map, people can follow conversations better and contribute more during meetings. Mind mapping is often seen as an alternative to traditional linear presentations such as PowerPoint or flip charts.
A survey by mind mapping expert Chuck Frey, shows that business users of mind mapping believe their productivity has increased on average by 25%. Although approximately 50% of mind mapping enthusiasts use it for some degree of project management, mind mapping is also being used across organizations to:
This means workers can operate more effectively, generate more stimulating ideas and become more effective in their jobs.
Professional mind mapping software such as MindView, MindGenius and MindManager include integration with MS Office, enabling users to transfer mind maps into other documents such as Word outlines or PowerPoint presentations. These export options ensure ROI for mind mapping users since there is no need to re-enter any data, as opposed to traditional whiteboard or flip charts sessions.
When it comes to project management, mind mapping is used to create simple to-do lists or more complex Work Breakdown Structures (WBS). Some of the more advanced mind mapping tools allow you to insert task information on branches and roll up this information, thereby making these software applications ideal for visualizing projects or creating a WBS. Several mind mapping tools also contain a built-in Gantt chart or MS Project integration, enabling users to transfer the work breakdown structure to a Gantt chart without re-entering data.
Visualizing mind maps in an online environment is a powerful way to collaborate and enhance team work, in particular when working from different locations. It is also a great way to present ideas and concepts to potential clients. Online mind mapping software or desktop mind mapping software with shared workspace integration provides users with a cloud-based platform and tools which allow for multiuser editing in real time, making multi-regional teams more effective across the organization.