Visual techniques training in large scale for qualified professionals

Phone rings – it’s an HR colleague we’d worked together with already: “Hi Szilárd, we’ve seen your training invitation, it sounds exciting, but no one has here so much time and our people don’t want to learn visual recording. They run internal trainings, stuck in the ppt-world. And we have the sales guys, they’d learn some more striking presentation techniques. I don’t want them to travel for hours and the headcount is also higher than your training limit. Ah, and they’d use what’s learnt as soon as from the following day on. And all we have is the flipchart size at most, basic colour markers and it’s not quite likely that anyone in this millennium would set off with pastels either. Can you do it?”

 can tell the one who calls what we can offer; and for the rest of you who fail to, I hereby put down how we worked in Paks. 

At request of Zsolt Mátrai, head of department, we have made a Visual Techniques sensitizing workshop for the Power Plant Qualified Trainers of the MVM Paks Nuclear Power Plant cPlc. Since here the tiniest mistake can lead to severe troubles, regular internal trainings have considerable impact on the power plant operation. It is therefore highly important for the trainings to be effective. Zsolt have requested us to teach the participants in the 2 x 90 minutes the basics to enable them to prepare the paper presentation popularized by us. The fact that we could work two times with headcounts above 40 and with people who were not used to drawing, was the icing on the cake. 

Feedback is being given on each other’s work

Working by the pin wand

With our colleague Csaba Fehér we’d bent to the task of eliminating all topics from the two days’ Visual Techniques Training that were not specifically supporting the above aim and did not fit into the time frame. We’d wanted the program to develop the groups of high headcount, while we stay being focused and they get feedback and attain the target that had been set.

Csaba is delivering the instructions for the making of templates

To achieve it, two of us worked with the group, we prepared a very tight schedule, led the groups in an explicit way and provided them the input via three different tools. 

1. A course book was handed over to each participant and we took the most important visual language elements page by page.

2. I showed everyone in large, with the biggest markers on our big board Oscar (formerly LWX panel) what to draw at the given moment.

3. In the meantime Csaba was drawing the verbal instructions and the illustrations that were being drawn on the big board under the document camera simultaneously with me, enabling all participants to see it projected and to follow on the screen, so they could copy HOW each of the icons, for example those of their industry, are drawn. The qualified trainers tested the demonstrated creative solutions by the tables in smaller scale, then on the flipcharts in big right away.

One could follow step by step on the big screen as the task was being executed.

Practising in the workbook.

Seldom can we see letters of such calligraphy.

We chose a handful of tools and, just as at our two days open trainings, we showed and practiced the basic visual elements, we demonstrated how we recommend to write, to draw figures and the icons typical to the industry. We have gone through the template-design step by step, and, taming the large-scale sheet, each participant have designed for himself the graphic form representing the individually chosen private and/or professional subject, that is, TEMPLATE, then made the content bearing cards as well. Those with some time left could even test their paper presentation in small groups.

Planing templates.

Thanks to Csaba, instructions can be see in big size. 

Paper presentations are being prepared.

Paper presentation: Route of the primary coolant

Participants gained in virtually 90 minutes the necessary tools, knowledge and operational competences that they could use from the following day on, making their everyday work more colourful and more effective. Working together with the Qualified Trainers proved to be an exciting and challenging project, thank you for the invitation.

Click here if your team haven’t got much time for visulalisation trainings either, however, they could do with some effective tool in their hands.

About Me

I’m Szilárd Strenner, the general manager of Grafacity Visual Services, a visual facilitator and organisational development consultant by profession. I’ve been doing trainings and leading groups since 1994. I got familiar with visual recording in 2010, and I wrote my final thesis on this topic for my OD consultant education. We set up Grafacity Visual Services and became active members of IFVP, International Forum of Visual Practitioners. I take part in nearly a thousand of hours of visual client-work independently or together with my colleagues annually. I would like to better understand how we can support the change processes with our visual means the most efficiently.

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