Visual management is a process that helps organisations communicate and manage information more effectively. By using visual management, organisations can create effective boards that help them communicate their goals, strategies, and progress to employees, effectively giving them visability of what is happening in the organisation, how they are tracking against KPIs and to manage improvement, safety and standardising work. It also reduces the information gap between leadership and what is happening in the organisation and creates better alignment.
Remember the saying that “you can only manage what you can measure.”
Here are quick steps on building an effective visual management board:
Step 1: Define the Boards Purpose.
The first step in creating an effective visual management board is to define the boards purpose. Boards should have a specific purpose, such as quality, cost, delivery, safety and environment which will help to ensure that the boards are effective in their role.
Step 2: Choose the Right Format.
The second step in creating an effective visual management board is to choose the right format. Boards can be in paper or electronic form, but they should have a clear structure and layout. They should also be easy to use and navigate, so that all members of the team can access and understand them easily. Start simple and make more complex as people get used to the use of boards as part of their daily meetings. Use effective graphics and charts that quickly show the current state vs too much text.
Some effective ways to create graphics and charts include:
-Using graphs to show how various areas are performing over time.
-Creating visual displays of data that can be easily understood.
-Using colorful graphics to help illustrate complex information.
Step 3: Create Guidelines for Board Use.
The third step in creating an effective visual management board is to create guidelines for board use. This will help to ensure that boards are used effectively and efficiently, and that all members of the team are aware of their responsibilities when using boards and updating information. By getting people in the work area to make the updates, there is a greater chance it will be sustainable and become part of the operational process.
Step 4: Train Staff on How to Use Boards.
The fourth step in creating an effective visual management board is to train staff on how to use boards. This will help to ensure that boards are used effectively and efficiently, and that all members of the team are aware of their responsibilities when using boards. The boards should be integrated into daily meetings i.e. tool box, pre-start, standing meetings instead of it being window dressing and hidden in the background.
Step 5: Evaluate the Effectiveness of Boards.
The fifth and final step in creating an effective visual management board is to evaluate the effectiveness of boards and continuously updated and improved based on the need of the organisation. This will help to ensure that boards are effective in their role, and that they are helping to improve the workplace culture and performance.
Implementing visual management in the workplace can be a challenge. But by following these five simple steps, you can create effective boards that will help your organisation communicate more effectively.