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When you’re first brainstorming a new idea or researching a topic, you don’t know what ideas you’re going to come up with. As such, it’s hard to plan a layout for the information in a typical report format.
A mind map research and investigation tool allows you to free yourself from a predefined structure and lets the ideas grow as you develop them, ensuring that you don’t lose track of your thoughts. A mind map is a visual tool for structuring thoughts. It can be used on an individual or team basis and results in a hierarchical diagram of everything that has been discussed.
A mind map’s hierarchical and graphical nature also assists one in memorizing the information you lay down on it, giving them a number of applications:
- Researching new products and developing new ideas — as you discuss topics, they are recorded, allowing you to track idea development more easily, and for visualization for multiple people.
- As a problem-solving tool — helpful in brainstorming problems and building on ideas to determine solutions.
- As a presentation method — one is able to show how a process was developed, visualizing alternatives and topics discussed.
While useful for an individual to come up with ideas on their own, a mind map is a great tool for teams that are brainstorming together, ensuring that everyone’s ideas are heard and recorded in a logical, easy to absorb manner.