If you are reading this article, I guess that you are already introduced to the concept of mind mapping. However, here is once again an introduction to this incredible technique and the benefits it offers. Later on, you will be acquainted with which are the most important features you need to search for when purchasing mind mapping software.
Mind mapping is a practical creative technique that helps people to generate, connect and present numerous ideas and concepts. As an interactive process through which people are able to improve their efficiency in visual thinking and representation, mind mapping finds its use in many different areas. Until today, a variety of studies has shown that mind mapping can be useful for individuals or groups in different settings because of the diversity it presents.
The importance of diversity
Diversity means that through the process of mind mapping various skills and techniques can be enhanced. For one thing, words, images, and colors stimulate effective visual thinking and problem-solving. Evidence demonstrates that when a person involves a combination of words, images, and colors altogether, they can largely improve their memory as well.
Further, this technique is a form of communication medium that can extremely improve one’s communication and presentation skills. This is an ideal solution for those encountering difficulties in presenting their thoughts in front of a group of people. With the help of mind maps, one can easily make a dynamic visual illustration of new ideas and concepts and present them to their colleagues or superiors.
Finally, people find mind mapping useful individually or in a group for different purposes, such as project planning, brainstorming sessions, presentation, or team collaboration. The process of mind mapping truly influences one’s way of reflecting and presenting ideas. Studies show that mind maps are practical tools that encourage building upon others’ unique ideas and concepts. With the creation of mind maps, one can communicate its opinions and viewpoints.
Mind maps are usually created with specially designed mind mapping software. Today there are available numerous types of software that offer a wide array of options for visual thinking, mind mapping, and concept mapping. If you are interested in buying one you need to make sure that is the right tool for you if you are planning to be an individual user or for your team as well if you are buying it for more people.
Making the right choice
Certainly, every mind mapping software has its advantages and disadvantages. There are a few things you need to take into consideration when it comes to choosing a mind mapping software. Firstly, the mind mapping software should address your needs, whether you are looking for a tool for individual or group use. Secondly, it should include a few essential features that can make your mind mapping experience extraordinary. So if you are asking yourself which are these features, here is the list:
As mentioned above, the combination of images, symbols, or even clip arts with words can be a game-changer on every occasion. If the mind mapping software offers the possibility for uploading images and symbols in every scale and form, the experience changes and becomes outstanding. Simply put, the visual presentation of ideas gets substantially better.
Mind map for course preparation created with iMindQ. Download the template here.
With this feature, you would be able to add images or illustrations and connect them to every new idea – an option that gives a completely new perspective of the presented concepts. Consequently, images help to memorize information more easily, which is of great help when you are communicating your ideas to a group of people.
If one thing is certain, is that no matter the industry you are working in, mind map templates can ease the organization of your work. When you working as a project manager who wants to plan a project or as an event planner who needs to organize an event if the software you are using offers ready templates of mind maps you are a lucky person. Even though sometimes, the templates created according to our own needs are the best option, a complete template that contains all the information we need can significantly speed up the working process.
There will be cases when you will have other priorities and when it will be asked of you to create a map, so choosing an appropriate template is the best solution. The software-produced mind map templates most of the time include all the important information about a particular subject and, in addition, offer the possibility for modifications. So, having mind map templates available at any time is a win-win situation!
The possibility to export your mind maps as images, .pdf files, and web pages is the third aspect to consider when choosing which mind mapping software to buy. More important is the ability to export and import to and from different programs such as PowerPoint, Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, and Microsoft Project. You might be asking yourself why.
It’s simple. Usually before deciding which software to buy, one defines its needs and objectives. If you determine that you need software that will allow you to import information from outside programs inside your map, or export the map as a PowerPoint presentation or an image, you need to choose software that offers such solutions.
Leads mind map created with iMindQ and exported as an image. Download the template here.
Exporting and importing data between different software applications allows unhindered and complete exchanging of valuable information across teams. You might find yourself working closely with a remote project team that will require back and forth communication with you. In such a situation, you might need to send your project plan created like a mind map. The exporting feature will allow you to send the plan in a different format so that everyone could access it from their portable computer. In the end, you get the chance to continue your path towards executing your project with success.
Surely, you have heard the phrase ‘sharing is caring.’ Simple as it sounds, the feature for sharing is the last on the list.
When working in large-scale business environments, undoubtedly one looks for a way to collaborate closely and share information with their team all the time.
If this is the case for you, a mind mapping software that provides a feature for sharing mind maps across a big team should be your choice. Furthermore, if this feature is accompanied by the option of giving feedback and commenting, you are on the right path.
Sharing mind maps is indispensable for team meetings, project presentations, or brainstorming sessions because with it every member of the team gets the chance to express their opinion and viewpoint on a particular topic. Sharing a mind map with your colleagues or superior can substantially improve internal communication and collaboration.
About the author
Kristina Gjorgievska, a content writer and translator. Eternal inspiration: the magical Italy, Jim Morrison’s poetry, Bernardo Bertolucci’s timeless “Stealing Beauty”, and the dynamic and meditative Ashtanga Yoga. You can connect with Kristina on LinkedIn.