Tuesday, February 12, 2008

TD ThinkingWorks Add-in for MindManager 7

I am always on the look out for new MindManager Add-ins and recently came across one from Thinking Dimensions, a consultancy that focuses on helping companies to make better decisions through a collaborative problem solving approach using the KEPNERandFOURIE™ thinking technologies. In order to learn more about the TD ThinkingWorks add-in for MindManager 7, I had the opportunity to speak with Ingrid Hogervorst, Product Manager to get some background information and to learn how Thinking Dimensions ThinkingWorks can help individuals and companies make better decisions. Ingrid shared with me that the company Thinking Dimensions is an International consultancy that helps companies and organizations to resolve strategic and operational issues. Using the tie tested and proven thinking methodologies developed by KEPNERandFOURIE™ the consultancy helps companies to work through problematic situations using a structured problem solving approach which helps to make the decisions making process both visible and collaborative. Ingrid shared with me that MindManager 7 is an extremely important tool to help individuals and companies to better visualize possible solutions to a problematic situation. Combining the visual tools built-into MindManager with the TD ThinkingWorks add-in provides a wonderful platform to help individuals and groups to collaborate and to think through a situation all the while being guided by the prompts that TD ThinkingWorks add-in has to offer. As Ingrid shared, all too often groups will brainstorm possible solutions which may not really be tied to the objective and may be irrelevant to the problem being solved. Using the TD ThinkingWorks add-in, ensures that groups work through the problem using timed tested approach. The KEPNERandFOURIE™ thinking technologies relies not only on rational thinking and divergent thinking but captures creative and intuitive dimensions to problem solving as well.

TD ThinkingWorks includes 5 different templates that can be used depending on the problem that is at hand. These include ThinkingWise, which can be used to clarify a vague or complex problem; CauseWise, which can be used to understand the cause of a problem; RiskWise, which can be used to identify potential risks; SolutionWise, which can be used to generate solutions to problems, and PriorityWise, which can be used to prioritize and gain focus on a problem.

I had the chance to download The TD ThinkingWorks add-in from the Thinking Dimensions website and the installation went very smoothly. Once TD ThinkingWorks was installed it appears as a tab right within MindManager 7. Clicking on the TD ThinkingWorks tab shows the ribbon and your options for selecting one of the starting Wizards which include: ThinkingWise, RiskWise, SolutionWise, CauseWise, or PriorityWise. Depending on your scenario you select one of the Wizards and you are walked through the entire process step by step. There are helpful prompts and hints on how best to answer the questions as the Wizard guides you and your team to better decision making process. The Wizard really keeps you on task and makes you think through the problem in a clear and methodical manner. This would be a great tool to have at a meeting with a projector so that everyone can collaborate as your resolve a particular issue. By going through the process, you ensure that the end result or output is relevant to the problem. When you have completed the process the Wizard in the background has been building a visual map with all of the inputs that you entered during the session. I found TD ThinkingWorks add-in to add a great deal of value to MindManager 7 and a cost starting at $29.99, you having nothing to lose and all to gain, as your teams become more effective in making problem solving highly visible, visual, and collaborative. Ingrid shared with me that she will be doing a number of webinars during the next couple of months to show people how TD ThinkingWorks can be used with MindManager 7, to help organizations make better decisions. I think that once you take a look at TD ThinkingWorks you will agree that is much value in this add-in for problem solving and decision making in your organization. For more information go to ThinkingWorks web site. If you have ad questions about TD ThinkingWorks, please feel free to contact Ingrid Hogervorst, Product Manager.

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