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Mindjet User Spotlight: Al Shah

Al Shah image
Name: Al Shah
Title: Social Media Consultant
Started using Mindjet: 2006
Social links: LinkedIn

How did you hear about Mindjet?

I first came across the concept of mind mapping during my MBA studies in 2006. My fellow students were using mapping techniques to plan out their course work and the simplicity behind it struck me right away. While working at GlaxoSmithKline, I discovered similar practices were being used by my colleagues to manage projects. Having researched the various tools available, I was impressed by what Mindjet had to offer. I downloaded the free trial and the rest is history.

What do you primarily use it for?

One day I can be using it to help plan and prioritize my work and the next organize a trip with family and friends. Most recently I have been studying for a post graduate diploma and have relied heavily on mapping to create complex, intuitive frameworks for my ideas.

At work I interact with a diverse group of stakeholders. By centralizing information in a map, we can share updates in a clear and concise manner and I can keep tabs on the progress of others at any point. I also have the Mindjet app on my iPad so can use it wherever I go.

In my spare time I often create ‘causal maps’ as part of a problem solving technique. Presenting information visually makes it easier to see the connections between various elements of a puzzle and allows me to piece it together more quickly.

What is your favourite feature and why?

If I had to pick one, I think the simplicity of adding icons and images is great. It allows me in a collapsed view to look at a map and instantly know what it relates to. Having this functionality also helps me to think more creatively about the subject matter in hand, and consider how it might be represented with a graphic.

Is there anything Mindjet helps with that was unexpected?

I have actually found it really useful for helping my children with their homework. Because it is so simple to use, I often get them to flesh out assignment ideas and explore their thoughts using basic maps, which they really enjoy. They also like the fact they can compile and organize links to documents and webpages for past and future modules which makes it easy to flick back and forth from.

Tell me about the map you’ve attached here.

As part of my studies, I had to deliver a group presentation on special envoys. This involved working with others to study countless academic resources and record insights and references for the final assessment. With the help of Mindjet, what could have been a very complicated task was actually very straightforward. Everyone had visibility of who was reading what and the insight that had been gathered. This made it simple to agree on an angle as a group and assign tasks for delivery of the presentation.