Team Flowcharting Drawing Software
A Special Note on Team Flowcharting
Flowcharting is particularly useful when used by a group or team. This is because by drawing a flowchart together, the team
- develops a common understanding of the situation
- contributes a larger pool of knowledge than an individual can (assuming team members are well chosen for their knowledge and experience)
- can agree a common approach to solving problems, resolving ambiguities and making improvements
Team leaders will find that drawing a flowchart progressively on a whiteboard or flipchart, as team members contribute their information, opinions and ideas, will not only identify problems and areas of confusion, but will also automatically build consensus and commitment by focusing the team's attention on a single shared view of their task. Be warned, however, that while flowcharting looks easy to do, it takes practice to use effectively. It forces users to identify process steps so that they are clear and logical, which is of course its principal purpose.
Flowchart to help communicate what actually happens or needs to happen.
After taking stock of a process by flowcharting it, the final form of the flowchart (which should describe the process clearly and unambiguously) can then be used to communicate to others. Communication of processes is important for two reasons,
- people who are new to particular processes need to learn them and be able to refer to information about them
- the organization benefits considerably from standard processes and these must be clearly communicated to be effective
Flowcharts can either be distributed unchanged to communicate processes, or they can be used to help prepare logically structured and clearly written policies and procedures.
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