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whiteboards workplace

Using your whiteboard to increase productivity

Brainstorming – How to facilitate team discussions

For team discussions to be effective, different opinions and interpretations must be heard and understood. An effective system to facilitate team discussions is through the use of a whiteboard.   A whiteboard is a great way to organise thoughts and create a visual representation of ideas.

Firstly, prepare for your team meeting prior to the group assembling by writing down key points requiring discussion on your whiteboard.  This helps with navigating the discussion and ensures that all critical topics are addressed.

During your meeting, use the whiteboard to capture information derived from team dialogue by noting down main points as they are raised.  This process also helps to recognise any issues that may be identified through discussion, allowing for further deliberations which assist in finding a resolution by the contributors.  To aid the facilitator of the team discussion and to also engage staff involved in the deliberations, coloured markers and a whiteboard eraser can be used.

Great tip: Take a photo of your whiteboard at key times during your meeting and upload your photos as files that can be accessed by your staff when needed.

Or why not use your whiteboard as a task list?

A whiteboard can be used as a key tool to organise your workflow, track priorities and schedule tasks for completion.

Start by creating a list of things that need to be done on your whiteboard.  Include an area on your list that can be checked off as each task is completed.  You may also like to assign different tasks to different employees.  Visually seeing the tasks checked off on completion will give your staff a sense of achievement but also provide a visual reminder of things that still need to be accomplished.

You may like to add Expected completion dates or Action Required by fields to hold staff accountable to a timeframe.

A great tip is to use different coloured whiteboard markers to generate your list as it makes it easier to interpret and differentiate the information on your list. You could implement a common colour scheme to be used by all staff to aid in the interpretation of information at a glance.  For instance, the task may have written in black marker, a blue marker may be used to assign the task to a staff member, red may be used for the Expected completion date and a green marker may be used to check off the task once it has been completed.

You could use a brighter coloured marker to help identify more critical or time sensitive tasks.

Whiteboard Planners

A vital skill in professional success is effective organisation.  It’s great to be busy but sometimes life can be too hectic, so it’s best to stay on top of things.   Being organised will put your mind at ease and a great tool to help this happen is a having a functioning whiteboard planner or calendar.

The benefits of a whiteboard planner?

A whiteboard calendar can help schedule and keep track of meetings.  Also with a whiteboard planner, if days or times of meetings change you can simply erase the old agenda and add the updated information – such a hassle-free and neat solution!

A clever idea is to use different coloured markers to schedule different categories of tasks or meetings.   This will assist to organise your planner and distinguish between your meetings at a glance.

Having a visual copy of your overall planner in front of you when scheduling tasks and meetings will help avoid “double-booking” meetings or overstretching yourself with regards to time and task management.

Having a whiteboard planner in the workplace aids in communication between employees.  For example, if you have a whiteboard calendar in the office for recording planned staff leave or off-site meetings everyone will know who is in attendance or available.

Another great use for a whiteboard planner is the scheduling of meeting rooms or resources.  If a shared whiteboard planner is used then spaces or resources can effectively be delegated without confusion or overbooking.

Yearly whiteboard planners can help with looking at the bigger picture.  These whiteboards allow for the planning and scheduling of larger or longer-term projects by allowing you to visualise your workload months in advance.