Visual Thinking

Visual Thinking in a Visual Workplace

What is a visual workplace?

A visual workplace is a self-ordering, self-explaining, self-regulating and self-improving work environment – where what is supposed to happen is happening on time, every time, day or night – because of visual solutions.

Dr Gwendolyn Galsworth

The 8 building blocks of visual thinking

At the core of an effective “visual workplace” are visual thinkers.

That is people who understand and are practicing (applying) skills associated with the 8 Building Blocks of Visual Thinking.

Info Deficits
6 Core Questions
Motion Metrics
Value Field
Information Defecit

“Information Deficit” doesn’t necessarily mean the information doesn’t exist somewhere, it usually does. What it does mean is it is not at hand at the right time for the right person.

When there are information deficits, because people generally have the right intent, they often just make stuff up. That creates all manner of risk.


I-Driven goes right to the heart of “what’s in this for me and my fellow workers”.

I-Driven covers two key questions:

Source: Visual Workplace Visual Thinking, Visual-Lean Enterprise Press 2005

What do I need to know?

What do I need to share?

How we use visual thinking

Visual Workplace Australasia builds internal capability in applying the 8 Building Blocks of Visual Thinking such that “visuality” is integrated into day to day value add and leadership tasks.

For example, “Making ‘Normal’ Easy To See” (that picks up a number of the Building Blocks) is a logical follow on to establishing Work Standards, the very first step in Standardisation. The storyboard used in practicing the Improvement Kata can be enhanced through visual thinking.

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