What did we do before whiteboards? It’s hard to imagine some days. Despite us supposedly entering an era of technology and the (eventual) paperless office – it seems that we always wind up going back to our most fundamental roots and start making the cave-drawings on the walls again. The problem, of course, is after the meeting – and whatever poor schmuck is stuck with capturing the minutes after the fact.
Many of us try to capture the drawings as they are developed; or stay afterwards to draw what was left on the board (and hopefully make sense of it as well).
Embarrassingly enough a tech writer pointed out an ingenious (and admittedly obvious) solution; just use my digital camera.
At the time, digital cameras were still stand-alone items… but today with these cameras being incorporated into a variety of devices (including that cell phone that is probably permanently attached to your ear) – there is little excuse for not rapidly capturing your meeting cave-drawings.
Keep in mind the following however:
- the flash may obscure some parts of your diagram; so take multiple shots (this is also good if you have a shaky hand)
- you may need to take different shots – up close and some all encompassing – in order to get a clear picture of the work
- don’t forget to erase the board when done – but only after checking to ensure your pictures are clear and usable
The extra advantage to this approach is that you only need attach the pictures to your meeting minutes/records of decisions you send out after – and may just get away without having to spend hours recreating diagrams in whatever presentation software your office uses.