Here at RealtimeBoard, we are building the #1 visual collaboration platform trusted by over 2 million users. Recently we launched a new collection with 50+ templates built to help your team communicate and drive alignment.
We get that 50+ templates can be overwhelming at first. That’s why we’re breaking down one feature specifically for HeyDesigner readers. Mind maps are a versatile tool that you can use to guide brainstorming, flowchart creation, and much more. Keep reading to discover some of the varied way the Mind Map template can help your creative thinking.
Can’t wait to get started? Head over to our templates page and give it a try right now!
Simple Mind Map
In its simplest form, a mind map is a visual diagram in the form of a tree or spider, where major categories radiate from a central node, and lesser categories are the sub-branches of larger ones.
Check out the free mind map template in RealtimeBoard (you’ll also find plenty of other templates there, including user story maps, timelines, Kanban boards, and much more). You can place pictures, videos, and any other visuals next to your mind map to support and expand upon your ideas.
With RealtimeBoard Mind Map, together with your team you can concurrently brainstorm, design information architecture, plan projects, create org charts, develop sales strategies, and more.
Tony Buzan, Inventor of Mind Mapping, suggests the following steps for creating your map:
Start in the center of a blank canvas, giving your brain the freedom to spread out and express ideas freely and naturally.
- Use colors throughout; it adds extra vibrancy and life to your mind map.
- Use one keyword per line as it gives your mind map more power and flexibility.
- Use images throughout. A picture is worth a thousand words and helps you use your imagination.
A concept map is a graph used to visually illustrate the relationships between concepts. A concept is a thought framework defined by an explicit “focus question.” Mapped concepts represent a hierarchical structure that allows you to further understand the matter and build stronger arguments.
A concept map differs from a mind map in the layout. Usually, it follows a hierarchical structure and shows more complex interrelations between concepts (a concept can relate to more than just the mother node).
With RealtimeBoard’s shapes and arrows, you can build endless but clear concept maps without any limits for free.
Random words is a brainstorming technique that encourages your imagination to create different perspectives and new angles on the idea or the problem you are facing. By analyzing your environment, you come up with new ideas that can help you solve the problem.
By forcing yourself to use a random word prompt to find a solution, you are almost guaranteed to go beyond the boundaries and attack the problem from a different direction than usual. With RealtimeBoard, you can use the random words technique online together with your team, even if you are located in different states or countries.
A flowchart is a step-by-step algorithm, workflow, or process visualized with shapes of various kinds and ordered with arrows. Flowcharts help visualize a particular process to help understand it and find flaws and bottlenecks. There are different types of flowcharts, and while some of them require specific types of shapes (like ovals or diamonds), a simple sitemap or business process will work with text boxes. With RealtimeBoard you can make a flowchart online with your team.
Dialogue mapping is a facilitation technique by Jeff Conklin. The map promotes a shared understanding of a wicked problem, where social and technical complexities are in place.
When a group of smart people gathers to solve a complex or difficult problem, the common challenge is: how can they see the whole picture and understand what the problem truly is? With RealtimeBoard, teams all over the world can see the big picture in real time and maintain shared understanding, remote access, and knowledge retainment. The built-in mind mapping tool will help to dig into the problem further and brainstorm it faster.
Dialogue mapping aligns well with Agile practices and can be a powerful tool to give clarity, focus, and guidance to Agile activities. It can even be used for Retrospective meetings, creating a better understanding of the next improvement to be made by the Agile team, be it Scrum, FDD, Lean, RUP, or any development team.
The concepts I’ve shared here give you a quick overview of the different ways you can use the Mind Maps feature on RealtimeBoard to collaborate and problem solve with your team. But this is just the beginning! There are 50+ drag-and-drop templates that make it easy for you to get started on your project right away. Whether you’re running agile sprints, sketching, or managing a product backlog, we’ve got you covered. Check out all our templates here.
Full Disclosure: This article is sponsored by RealtimeBoard.