Decision Making, Visually!


So, recently, LinkedIn, the professional networking platform, asked me why my activities on their networks standout? Why is it that I am so partial to visual presentations than textual ones? Here are my responses to their questions and I hope you can use them too.

  1. Compared to the rest of the parts of our neo-cortex, our visual cortex is larger, and it stores larger amount of data than all other parts of the neo-cortex. It is also more intimately connected to our deeper, limbic brain. Visuals/Images are attractive, easy to understand, harder to misinterpret and they help us discern and decide more rapidly compared to data from senses like taste, touch and smell. Text or scripts are really tiny images but scores of them have to put together, interpreted correctly before being understood and accepted.

When visuals are colorful they also stimulate and excite the creative, playful nodes in the whole brain. They bring up instantaneous smiles from the viewers while releasing increased happy chemicals inside the brain.

Pit Bulls & Entrepreneurs (2010)

In most of my presentations, I use a higher percentage of uncluttered, simple and colorful images. I also, for the sake of recall and personal branding, stick to a few select colors like black, white, grey and red.

All these features make for memorable presentations, articles and blogs.

  1. Uploading visual content that is thematic, has a steady set of colors has deepened and strengthened my brand. A simple glance at most of the visuals I use, tell my readers and followers that the message and the material belongs to Raju Mandhyan.

I must admit that creating the visuals, thinking of their explicit and implicit impact on the minds of viewers and readers takes a lot of thinking through and concentrated effort.

I read somewhere, and I do believe that most all us rapid-scan all content on the screens of our computers and mobile devices. It’s like we surf through tons of data. We are always on the run and we are always looking for novelty and relevance right NOW. In the days gone by it used to take seven seconds or less to draw and hold someone’s attention and make any impact them. Today, I believe that it takes less than three seconds do the same. It is an MTV driven, hyperactive world and we must make all efforts to stand out like the proverbial purple cow. In my case, it is a red dog, of course.

  1. My suggestion to all other LinkedIn members is to become a people of few words and more images. You do know that a picture is worth a thousand words. Think of yourself as being a blend of modern-day, digital Picasso and Clint Eastwood. That is to use images that make a statement and back them up with a few words like, “Go ahead, paint my dog red!”

In essence, even for online discussions, trust and believe that visuals and images create faster connections, higher engagement and stronger impact.

Come November, I am running a one-day open-to-public training event called Decision Making with Mind-Mapping. The focus in this highly interactive workshop will be how we can gather all information and ideas on paper-colorfully and creatively, to be be able to rapidly and precisely discern and decide on solution-focused outcomes for business challenges and drive growth.


2 replies
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