Mind mapping is a great way to brainstorm and come up with new ideas. But you can do more than just word clouds with mind mapping software. In this video, Scott Friesen shows you how to use Miro for note-taking, meetings, project management, and so much more!
If you think that mind mapping is just word clouds and circling things together, think again. Because in this video, I'm going to show you four new ways in how you can use mind mapping to work smarter, faster, and a whole lot freer. So let's dive in. When it comes to note-taking, you're probably already familiar with taking your notes within a document or some other note-taking software. But this type of note-taking forces us into some very linear thinking where we start at the top and add things at the bottom. And no matter how I list things out here within my notes, I'm always going to be drawn to the things at the top of the screen. And maybe if I want these use cases at the top, I'm going to have to select all of this. I'm going to have to cut it, hit Enter a few times, and then paste it just to bring it up here to the top. Now, I've got this ugly space down below, which I can fix, but then I've got another problem. Maybe I want to reorder the things that I've listed here. If I want "develop sales strategy," once again, I've got to sort of copy or cut and paste just to put things in the order that makes the most sense to me. Well, there's a much easier and faster way to take our notes. Here I am within Miro, and I have essentially the same notes that we saw on the previous screen. But the great thing is that I can quickly and easily reorder anything that I want, and I can move things around as well. If I want these mind mapping features down below and this over here, maybe I want to switch this over here to the left-hand side, I can do so with ease. And if I want to add new ideas, well, that's pretty quick as well. I'm going to hit this Plus button. And let's say there's a new section that I want to start adding here. I'm going to hit Enter, and I'm going to hit Plus. And now I can start adding those new ideas. So maybe "New idea number 1," hit Enter. "New idea number 2," hit Enter. "New idea number 3." You get the idea. But here, right away, I can start to rearrange things in the order that I like. But not only does this make it easy for me to rearrange information within the section which I've just created, but maybe I feel that this second idea actually should be featured under Other features. Well, all I need to do is drag it, and I can bring it up here into Other features. Maybe this idea as well needs to be grouped up here. I can drag them both here. And now they're all in the section that I desire. So taking your notes here within a mind map can not only be faster, but also allow you to group your information any way that you like. So if you want to keep like-minded things maybe on the right-hand side, put other things here on the left-hand side. Another nice benefit is that with just the scroll of your mouse cursor, you can dive into one of your sections and just focus on them. As opposed to a traditional note-taking tool where you're going to be forced to see all of your notes on the same screen, this can allow you to zoom in just on the information that you want to view at any given time. Now, another way in which we can take advantage of mind maps is by using it for brainstorming purposes. Often we'll think of word clouds or word bubbles for brainstorming, but here's another creative way in which you can do so. Here within Miro, I can set up a list of sticky notes. And what I've done is actually created a grid here just waiting for me to input information. Now instead of grouping like-minded things together right from the beginning, the purpose of this board is just to freely get out those ideas, and then I can move to a secondary stage of grouping things together. So for each of these sticky notes, I can start to click inside. And again, like we saw before, I can start to input another idea. Maybe I'm going to click over here, and here's a secondary idea that I'm thinking about doing as well. And I can just freely create and add things to these notes. In addition, Miro's going to allow me to share this board with others. So if I want others to contribute or maybe to contribute in real time, we can do so as well. But it gets even better. Once I've input all of my ideas and all of my brainstorming sticky notes, I can start to pull out the ones that are perhaps related. So maybe I'm going to grab this focus group over here and create a chorus, because maybe I'd like to put these together. I can select them all and maybe give them a similar color in this case. I can also give them a tag if I want. Maybe they're all related to my development team, so I'm going to add that tag here as well. And just like we saw when it comes to collaborating, we can also add comments and notes. So here I'm going to add a comment. "Let's ask Tim to look into this." Maybe something like that. So now this comment is going to be attached directly to this note. I can change its color. We can even decide to resolve it maybe at a certain time in the future. But we can go further with this. And maybe opening a new store is related to one of these other ideas. But I want to leave them over here, sort of in its incubation state. What I'm going to do is grab an arrow, and I'm going to draw something here so I can connect it over here. So no matter what I do with this particular group, no matter where I move it, I can see that there is going to be a relation with this note up above. So it gives me a lot of flexibility. And depending on how you think or how you do your best brainstorming, Miro gives us a lot of different options to work with. Next up, let's take a look at how we can improve something that most people dread, meetings. First things first, Miro allows us to leave PowerPoint behind. We can include as many images and design elements directly to our boards, including inputting video, so we can keep everything in the same place. Whether it's a meeting agenda or key points, you can include that right here within your board. But if I simply move over here to the right, you can see that this is so much more than just a presentation. I have an opportunity to make this engaging and very, very productive. On the right-hand side of my board, I have four different areas that I want us to work through so that we can improve on the past and look forward to the future. I've got four different sections titled Continue, Stop, Invent, and Act. And what I'd like my team to do is spend the next few minutes to input additional ideas for these different sections. Again, I can share them with as many individuals as I want. And then they can come in here and add their own sticky notes to each section. So maybe under Continue, what's going to help us move forward? Maybe we need to hire some new staff, something along those lines. We can take some time and add that information here within these areas. And if you want to make sure that you keep on task, Miro also gives us some additional meeting features here at the top of the screen. So for example, if I want to set a timer for three minutes or any duration that I like, I can do so right here. And I know from experience, by having a countdown clock on the screen in front of you is one of the best ways to make sure that you keep your meetings from going over time. But another incredibly helpful feature is the ability to vote on those ideas once they've been submitted. Here I'm going to open up the Voting tab. And first off, I can choose what the section or what that voting area will look like. So maybe I don't want to look at the top two quadrants. I just want to look at these two areas down below. After I've selected my voting area, I can choose how many votes I would like each individual to have and how long it's going to take us to complete that voting. When I'm happy with these settings, I can come down here and hit Start. Now it's telling me that the voting session has started. And yes, votes are anonymous. Now, I don't have to participate if I'm just the organizer, but I'm going to select Join the voting so I can show you what this will look like to participants. So maybe I'm going to give one vote for this one. I'm going to give another vote over here. And actually you can give two of your votes to the same task, or in this case, the same sticky note, if I want. I'm going to say that I'm done. I've submitted my votes. And I'm also going to choose to end this for everyone. I'm going to say End this session. And in just a few seconds, it will tally up those votes and give me a result so I can see which is the winner or who is in the lead. Now, of course, in this example, it was just myself. But this can not only be an incredibly engaging exercise, but a very productive one as well. By selecting See all the votes, I can see the breakdown here. And you can also have multiple voting on these same Miro board. So maybe I had a different focus group or a different part of my team earlier yesterday, and then I have other teams or other meetings. I can keep track of that all right here within my board. Now, yet another way in which we can use mind maps is for setting goals or planning for the future. Here I've created something in a bit more of a hierarchy structure, and I've titled this 2023 Business Goals. Rather than putting this in a project management system or just using bullet points within a document, I've decided to do something a little more visual and also a little more colorful. And again, the great benefit here is that we all think a little differently, and sometimes just visualizing things in a different way can lead us to much better outcomes. So I've decided to hire some more development staff earlier in the month, and I'm going to start a weekly podcast. And I've decided to break these things down by different categories. So I can see perhaps the difference in terms of what it's going to take to start a podcast versus how we're going to reduce client turnover a little later in the quarter. And just like we saw with our initial notes, all we need to do is hit this Plus button down below, and we can immediately start to add new ideas. So maybe we want to focus on some keywords here such as "productivity." I'm going to hit Enter here. Maybe "business tools" is going to be another one, and maybe a "software app." So again, quickly and easily I can input that information. And if I need to move things around, well, that's quick and easy as well. If I want to change these dates and visualize this in a different way, Miro makes it super easy. Now, to get started with Miro and to explore all of the templates that Miro has to offer, go to miro.com or click the link in the description down below. And remember, being productive does not need to be difficult. In fact, it's very simple.
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