Boston is a city rich in American history, and this week, Lucidchart added some history of its own with the first East Coast stop on our 2018 Lucidchart Connect Tour.
You might think the title of this blog post is a little exaggerated (and maybe we did embellish a little—we were feeling patriotic given the location of this event), but I’ve heard many Lucidchart users give similar feedback in recent months:
“You can never take Lucidchart away from me!”
“Lucidchart is vital to my workflow now. I don’t know what I’d do without it!”
Lucidchart fans came from all around the Boston area to the World Trade Center to learn more about this beloved software. They came to learn, to get their questions answered, to network with other users—and I’m pretty sure the free swag and drinks were a nice bonus!
The future of Lucidchart
We were lucky enough to be taught by two Nathans in Boston. First, Lucid CMO Nathan Rawlins opened our minds regarding the shift that the modern workforce needs to make.
Many of the office tools you use have become antiquated. Rather than working with the sole intent of optimized efficiency, we need to be more focused on creativity and invention. The world needs new solutions that approach problems in a whole new light. The information revolution has created amazing digital platforms that can do just that, and Lucidchart is at the forefront.
Lucidchart allows users to share information rapidly as they work visually. I’ve heard multiple Lucidchart users say, “A diagram is worth 100 pages of text (or a thousand words),” and the clarity a diagram provides has helped our users innovate faster.
At Lucidchart, we’re relentlessly creating additional ways for you to clearly communicate your ideas and solutions to your teams and clients. We already have many automated features like org charts and data linking that help you work smarter and more effectively. And we’re always on the lookout for new ways to help you visualize your information so you can collaborate and innovate with your teams at greater speeds.
Customer spotlight: whiteboard to Lucidchart
Nathan McBride, the VP of Global IT at Orchard Therapeutics, has been using Lucidchart for many years, and he graciously came out to our Lucidchart Connect event to demonstrate a few unique and powerful ways that he uses Lucidchart in his work.
I’m sure you’ve been in meetings where your group begins talking through either a project plan or process improvements, and someone acts as scribe and writes ideas down on a whiteboard as the group throws them out. Then what happens after the meeting? Someone is charged with the frustrating task of capturing all the information from the whiteboard, making sense of it, and sending it out to the group as a follow-up.
Until AI catches up, Nathan McBride has found a clever workaround to digitize these whiteboard diagrams into Lucidchart:
- Take a picture of the whiteboard diagrams.
- Insert the picture into Lucidchart.
- Right-click the image, and click Arrange > Send to Back.
- Right-click the image again and lock it.
- Then simply click and drag relevant shapes onto the canvas and overlap them on the picture, also inserting text fields where needed.
- Once you have all the shapes overlaid, delete the picture, and you’re left with a diagram in Lucidchart that you can easily share with your team.
Nathan uses Lucidchart to effectively map out the career path for everyone within the IT department at his companies.
He shows each major career level in the department and lists everything an individual needs to learn and do in order to master that position and be ready for a promotion.
This career progression map clearly defines expectations for each employee. They know what they need to learn and gain experience in to become proficient in their current role, and they can also refer to the map to plot out career aspirations and even create a timeline to accomplish it. From entry level Help Desk to VP, the path is clear.
Nathan also uses conditional formatting within Lucidchart as “traffic lights” in his documents. It gives the document a dashboard feel so he can identify project bottlenecks and progress at a glance. He also showed how he uses timelines in Lucidchart to create maturity indexes and even IPO maps for companies.
Tips and tricks
Our own Angie Mecham and Taylor Dolbin closed the meeting with an advanced tips and tricks session to help attendees work more powerfully in Lucidchart. For similar training, you can register for one of our weekly “Become a Lucidchart Expert” webinars.
Here are some of the key topics they covered:
- Aligning and distributing shapes
- Using containers effectively
- Using advanced collaboration
- Using layers and hotspots
- Creating custom shape libraries
- Using templates for solution mapping
If you haven’t utilized custom shape libraries or templates in Lucidchart yet, you should definitely get familiar with those capabilities. These features can save you and your team hours of preparation time in Lucidchart and also make your proposed solutions look fantastic, whether you’re presenting to upper management or to clients.
Many of our users say they can’t live without Lucidchart—and it’s clear why. With the product roadmap, innovative use cases, and advanced features presented at Lucidchart Connect Boston, Lucidchart is only becoming better at helping companies communicate and act quickly on their big ideas.
If you want to experience the power of visual communication for yourself, we’re making a few more stops in Chicago, Seattle, San Francisco, London, and Sydney. Check out our event page for dates and more information.
About the author
Austin Catmull is a customer success manager who helps knowledge workers worldwide use Lucidchart to work visually. He knows that effective communication is what gets business done and that Lucidchart is a visualization tool that is second to none.
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