Flip Chart 101 – 4 Tips for Writing on Flip Chart Pages

Flip Chart 101 – 4 Tips for Writing on Flip Chart Pages

The rule of thumb that you should always keep in mind when writing information on your flip chart pages it “keep it simple.”  Adding too much data, information, and images only clutter the page and reduces viewer comprehension.

Tips for Writing on Flip Chart Pages by The Creative Trainer

Here are 4 tips for writing effectively on flip chart pages:

Flip Chart 101 - 4 Tips for Writing on Flip Chart Pages

1) Put only one idea or concept on a page.  Adding too many ideas on a page can detract from your message and confuse participants.

Flip Chart 101 - 4 Tips for Writing on Flip Chart Pages

2) When lettering, use block letters rather that cursive or custom elaborate and/or intricate style lettering. Lettering that resembles Helvetica or Sans Serif-type fonts found in word processing software work well.  These styles are straighter and aid readability and comprehension.

Flip Chart 101 - 4 Tips for Writing on Flip Chart Pages

3) Always leave two- to three-inch margins on each side of the paper to avoid crowding information.

Flip Chart 101 - 4 Tips for Writing on Flip Chart Pages

4) Avoid using the bottom one-third of the page if you are on the same height level as participants. Otherwise, they may either be forced to stand or strain to look around people in front of them or may not be able to see the flip chart at all.

For additional ideas on how to effectively design, develop, use, transport and store flip charts, get a copy of The Big Book of Flip Charts: A Comprehensive Guide for Presenters, Trainers, and Team Facilitators.

Learn This Blogger – Robert W. Lucas

Robert W. Lucas is an internationally-known author and learning and performance expert. He specializes in workplace performance-based training and consulting services. Furthermore, he has four decades of experience in human resources development, management, and customer service in a variety of organizational environments. Robert Lucas was the President of the Central Florida Chapter of the American Society for Training and Development (ASTD).

Creative Flip Chart Review in Training

Creative Flip Chart Review in Training

Flip charts are a great way to present a visual record of progress made in a session. Without embarrassing themselves or disturbing others, those who arrive late or who need to find out what happened in the meeting can refer to the meeting’s flip charts if they’ve been posted on the walls. Participants can look around the room and see what has been discussed thus far.

Creative Flip Chart Review in Training

A savvy facilitator can easily walk to a point at a specific chart or item and reinforce or refer to it throughout the session. They can do so without interrupting the flow of content being delivered; as when they have to scan back through slides or other visual materials to revisit or re-emphasize a previous point.

Creative Flip Chart Review in Training by The Creative Trainer

Posting flip chart pages throughout the session provide for an excellent silent review process. This is not possible with slides or other computer graphic material that has to be searched to project it.

Additionally, by posting pages during a session, they can be used for later review. For example, at the end of the session, the facilitator can play a game in which participants have to answer questions or discuss issues or points brought out during the program. As the game progresses, participants can refer to the posted information as “cheat sheets.”

For additional creative ideas on using flip charts, get a copy of The Big Book of Flip Charts: A Comprehensive Guide for Presenters, Trainers and Team Facilitators by Robert W. Lucas

 

Creative Flip Chart Idea – Important Issues Page

Creative Flip Chart Idea – Important Issues Page

In a meeting, training, or brainstorming session when someone offers an issue, idea, expectation, concern, or whatever, that is not part of the planned agenda.

Creative Flip Chart Idea – Important Issues Page by The Creative Trainer

I encourage you to create a flip chart entitled Important Issues (I have also heard this type of page referred to as an idea Parking Lot). Tell them that while their item is important and of concern, it is crucial to get through the planned agenda before addressing extra issues.

Creative Flip Chart Idea - Important Issues PageExplain that if time permits at the end of the session you will revisit items on the sheet at the end of the scheduled event. If that is not possible, tell them you will either meet privately or schedule another meeting to address the items, if feasible.

This approach recognizes the importance of their issues without sacrificing valuable program time or getting off track.

For additional creative ideas on using flip charts, get a copy of The Big Book of Flip Charts: A Comprehensive Guide for Presenters, Trainers and Team Facilitators by Robert W. Lucas

About This Blogger – Robert W. Lucas

Robert W. Lucas is an internationally-known author and learning and performance expert. He specializes in workplace performance-based training and consulting services. Furthermore, he has four decades of experience in human resources development, management, and customer service in a variety of organizational environments. Robert Lucas was the 1995 and 2011 President of the Central Florida Chapter of the American Society for Training and Development (ASTD).

Robert W. Lucas has lived, traveled, and worked in 28 different countries and geographic areas. During the past 40 years, Bob has shared his knowledge with workplace professionals from hundreds of organizations, such as Webster University, AAA, Orange County Clerk of Courts, Walt Disney World, SeaWorld, Martin Marietta, all U.S. military branches, and Wachovia Bank. In addition, Bob has provided consulting and training services to numerous major organizations on a variety of workplace learning topics. To contact Bob visit his website at www.robertwlucas.com or his blog www.thecreativetrainer.com.

Be Creative with Your Flip Charts

Be Creative with Your Flip Charts

Be Creative with Your Flip ChartsIn my forty years of experience of facilitating training programs and teaching at the university level, what separates good flip charts from the bad (and in some cases, the ugly!) is always the ability of the facilitator to use creative techniques to share information. It is also their willingness to go beyond simply writing words on the flip chart paper.

I don’t know about you, but when I take the time to create professional-looking flip charts to support a presentation or learning event, I somehow feel more fulfilled as a facilitator. Maybe it’s because I don’t consider myself artistic or creative, so when I have a finished product that I think looks good, I feel a sense of accomplishment. This is amplified when someone else comments on the quality of my flip charts.

Also, in creating a series of pages for a session, I get to practice drawing simple characters and using some of the techniques I have learned over the year,s and to experiment with new ones. This practice enhances my skills even more. These, of course, are just side benefits. The main reason for using flip charts is that they help me communicate better.

Be Creative with Your Flip Charts by The Creative Trainer 

Research is done by the Wharton School of Business to determine the effectiveness of using visual aids when presenting found that using visuals in a presentation can cut meeting time by 24%. Here’s what they found:

  • When visuals were used, audience members perceived presenters to be more effective. Some comments following presentations were “better prepared, “more concise,” “clearer,” “more interesting.”
  • Following a visually supported presentation, 64% of participants were able to make a decision. Those in the non-visual group took longer to make a decision.
  • Of those audience members in a visual presentation, 79% reached a consensus, compared to 58% in a group with no visual support.
  • Of the participants in the visual presentation, 67% found the presenter convincing, compared to 50% in the group without visual support.

Notes + Flip Charts

If you have ever tried to take notes in a session as the facilitator rattles on, seemingly oblivious to the people in the room, you will understand the value of flip charts. Since participants can refer to a posted flip chart page without interrupting the facilitator to ask him or her to repeat a point, they are able to review material or catch up at their own speed. Additionally, the flip charts that the facilitator creates provide a vehicle for reinforcing what participants heard, or thought they heard.

Even though flip charts are not high-tech pieces of equipment, and have been around for decades, they are extremely flexible tools and can be surprisingly complex—and powerful, if used thoughtfully. As such, a degree of knowledge, ability, and creativity are required to use them effectively. What that means is that you must spend a bit of time reading books and articles about how to effectively create and use flip charts to get better at the skill. Once you have learned tricks for making your flip charts more colorful, visual, and professional-looking, spend some time practicing on pieces of copy paper. After perfecting the layout, language, and images you plan to use on your final flip charts, beginning transferring them to your flip chart paper. This method saves a lot of money that you will spend on expensive flip chart pads.

Be Creative with Your Flip Charts

Creative Way to Add Images To Your Flip Charts

Creative Way to Add Images To Your Flip Charts

If you want to add creative bullet points that tie to a session theme, add novelty, or provide visual enhancement to your written messages, take the time to gather a few tools for your trainer’s toolbox.

Creative Way to Add Images To Your Flip Charts

Go to art, craft, or another store in your area or on the Internet that sells wooden or cloth craft shapes.  There are literally hundreds of items used by artists and craft enthusiasts that can be used to enhance your presentation. For example, plastic or wooden figures of flowers, clothing shapes, furniture, people, equipment, or whatever can be used to trace graphic icons or images. Simply put on a blank flip chart page and trace the shape as you prepare your flip chart pages in advance of a learning event. If you still have access to an overhead projector, project the image to enlarge it on your flipchart paper and trace.

Creative Way to Add Images To Your Flip Charts by The Creative Trainer – Robert W. Lucas, Awarding Winning Adult Learning & Training Author

Learn This Blogger – Robert W. Lucas

Robert W. Lucas is an internationally-known author and learning and performance expert. He specializes in workplace performance-based training and consulting services. Furthermore, he has four decades of experience in human resources development, management, and customer service in a variety of organizational environments. Robert Lucas was the 1995 and 2011 President of the Central Florida Chapter of the American Society for Training and Development (ASTD).

Robert W. Lucas has lived, traveled, and worked in 28 different countries and geographic areas. During the past 40 years, Bob has shared his knowledge with workplace professionals from hundreds of organizations, such as Webster University, AAA, Orange County Clerk of Courts, Walt Disney World, SeaWorld, Martin Marietta, all U.S. military branches, and Wachovia Bank. In addition, Bob has provided consulting and training services to numerous major organizations on a variety of workplace learning topics. To contact Bob visit his website at www.robertwlucas.com or his blog www.thecreativetrainer.com.