Angela Myer, an experienced designer, has a created a video on visualization to give you more information on that important design tool, please check that out now. >> The visualization is a really core component of the way that we communicate, whether we're aware of it or not. When we're dealing with very complex problems, we're actually enacting a different kind of problem solving that has to bring in more than just logic. We're actually doing extrapolation. We're doing inductive reasoning. We're thinking about possibilities that we haven't yet seen. So that kind of imaginative work really has to be brought out by exercising and understanding that right side of our brain. So getting in the habit of doing visualization is actually a way of cultivating that side of our brain work. Visualization is really important. For the process of design because it's actually a way of unlocking a different part of brain. It allows us to think in a nonverbal way. It allows us to access parts of our brain, parts of our creativity, that we might not normally be using in the course of conversation. Most people will tell you, especially in the business world, that they are not artistic and they cannot draw. [SOUND]. Visualization isn't really about drawing, though. It's actually about visual thinking, and we all do it. What I've seen is that through practice, you can actually get better and better at doing it. Visualization is anything from the things we write on a chalkboard or a whiteboard. To the images that we create in a PowerPoint presentation, to photography, video. It's basically anything that takes us beyond just using words or language alone. Things like color. Things like symbols for example. If you're looking at logos and the way that companies represent the, represent themselves as a brand. Those are all ways to enact a more visual understanding. When we're talking and we're verbalizing things we see things internally, but we may all be understanding the words in a slightly different way. The beauty of using visualization is that we can tap into a single picture. The more you begin to use pictures, the more that you begin to diagram while you talk, and create a visual image for people of how you are thinking. The, the more likely you are to achieve a sense of agreement and consensus with people, the more you are likely to draw out conversation. In an environment where your, your ability to, to get things done and to solve problems is dependent on other people being able to understand you and align their ideas with yours. It's really, it's really important to be able to understand the way that you communicate to people. The primary tools for, for thinking visually are really just mastering some basic elements of imagining people, spaces, situations and actions or movements. It's very easy to create a simple diagram, and most anyone can draw a stick figure, an arrow, a circle, a square. Those are the basic building blocks of creating a visualization. Visualization has a role to play throughout the design process or the development process. Innovation itself has a, has a rich and detailed development process that we have to follow, from beginning with exploration, moving in through pattern finding. Kind of peeking with ideation sketching, that's where we really think about the way that images come in through prototyping, and finally in the way that we pilot and scale. Visualization has a role to play in each one of those pieces. It's, it's an incredible tool, in that sense, in that we're using those, those tools, that part of our brain, at each phase in the design process. Designers use visualization all the time. It's not just something that has an application in one part of the process. But it has many ways of being useful at different parts of the process. For example, we won't really rely heavily on photography when we're doing our exploration activities. So we're researching, we're trying to understand our users. We're looking at customers, we're looking at new user segments. Photography is a very rich way for us to understand that world. And not just the people themselves, but the context in which they live. Innovation is really centered on having a rich understanding of those contexts. So things like photography and sketching can be a very important way of capturing that kind of information. When we move on into pattern finding, that's where we start to think visually. So that's where we begin to take what we've learned in our exploration phase. And we begin to synthesize it. And since this itself is a visualization process. When you get to concept development visualization becomes incredibly key. Because concepts are literally coming out of your imagination. And your brain is creating pictures of something that doesn't yet exist. It's creating pictures of something that will soon be. The way that we might use visualization in that, in that kind of situation is through sketching. We might use a white board and work with the group. And, and use sketching and diagramming to capture our thinking. We might utilize photographs at that point to make sure that we understand what the customer experience is like. As we move forward into prototyping, we get much more detailed in the way that we start to visualize. Then we create very complex diagrams, or maps of how we think the customer experience ideally is going to work. Pictures and images enable us to not only help people understand what it is we're trying to do, but to help really persuade them in the worthiness of, of, that particular idea, or, or, the strength of, of that concept. So if I was introducing a new service and I was, I was actually relying on a number of people in the field to, to be able to deliver this, this service to a set of customers. They need to understand exactly how I intend this to work and I might use story boards, I might try to create visual scenarios. But they need to understand what it is we're trying to do so that they can actually create an effective testing environment for that idea. The advice I would give to business people who were interested in improving their visualization skills would be shortly, just to practice. It's the kind of thing where once you begin to use the skill. And it, it can be a little intimidating at first. But I think that people will find that once they start getting in the habit of doing that, you quickly see how the rest of the room responds to you when you get up and you start drawing.