Have you ever recorded a podcast episode?

There are a ton of podcasts out there in the world today.  I’m not sure how many, but I know that chances are some of my listeners have their own podcast. As an aside, if you’re ever interested or think you have something you’d like to share with the world via podcast, I’d love to talk to you about it.

If you’ve ever recorded your own and then edited it, you’ve had the chance to see what a waveform looks like.

When you record your audio into an audio editing program, it creates a visual waveform that is a translation of sorts of what you just spoke into your microphone.

It’s really powerful, because it lets you see pauses in the conversation, spikes in the volume and more. In fact, the more you get into it, you can even get to where you can start to identify actual patterns, like a lip smack or an “um” or  an inhale. It makes me think of the movie The Matrix where they watch these green rows of characters scroll down the screen but are able to translate those in their minds into a park bench or a steak or… bacon.

Anyway, I don’t edit my current podcast very much but recently I was thinking about how difficult it would be to try to do any editing if the waveform was just a straight line.

If you were trying to find specific spot in an interview or conversation, the whole thing would look the same and it would make it very difficult.

That’s one of the reasons why the visual waveform is so powerful.

And the idea carries of over to your business as well.

So, I’ve talked before about the power of visual communication in the workplace.

It’s one of those things that I’m really wired for and passionate about.

The more visual you can make things, the easier for everyone to know a status or communicate in the same way.

This can be using project management tools that let you know what is due next, or conditional formatting (one of my favorite Excel features) in Excel to highlight cells that meet a certain criteria.

It could be clearly marking where physical things should go on your desk or on a manufacturing floor, so that if the space is empty or the wrong thing is there, you can see it without too much searching.

It can even be including a screenshot of a dashboard of an Excel file that is sent out to a large distribution list, allowing people who only need that basic information to get it without opening the file itself, while others can dig deeper if they’d like.

The key is to take some time to try to identify areas where either a lot of miscommunication is happening or if there unnecessary effort being put in to get answers to questions that could have been answered by more visual posting or communication in your organization.

I will keep coming back around to this one because I’ve seen what can happen over and over when miscommunication or not enough communication happens.

So, why not ask some of your team members today where they have seen miscommunication or extra work happening and let them get creative about how to solve it with visual communication.

Thanks for listening to today’s episode. I’d love hear from you about today’s topic or just in general. You can shoot me an email at shawn@shawnwashburn.com or head to shawnwashburn.com/contact and you’ll find links to connect with me on social media as well.