Forces Affecting Trading in Global Markets
What products have you bought lately that were made in a different country? What countries produced them? Did you have any difficulty accepting the fact that the product came from there? If presented with the choice, would you rather buy foreign made products with a lower price or American made products with a slightly higher price (assuming they are of the same quality)? Does any of this matter if you are a business owner? Does this matter if you work for a U.S. based company?
Purpose: To understand the importance of idea generation, organization design, product design, problem solving, etc. in the business development process. Mindmapping is a tool that you can use to let your mind loose on almost any issue your are addressing. Personally, I use it all the time when I am struggling to complete a project. There are numerous software programs available, but pen and paper works well, too. If you use pen and paper, all you have to do is submit a picture of it. If you use a specialized mindmapping program, make sure you export it as a picture or PDF. Or, you can also take a screenshot.
Assignment: Select any issue and complete a mindmap. This can be personal or business related. Some example topics:
new product ideas for a specific problem/solution
Mindmapping in Eight Easy Steps (Article by Joyce Wycoff)
Mindmapping is one of the simplest, yet most powerful, tools a person can have in his/her creativity toolbox. It is a nonlinear way of organizing information and a technique that allows you to capture the natural flow of your ideas. Here’s a quick explanation on how to use this flexible tool. Try it the next time you need to write a memo, prepare a meeting agenda, or try to get a bird’s-eye view of a complex project.
Step 1: Center First.
Our linear, left-brain education system has taught us to start in the upper left-hand corner of a page. However, our mind focuses on the center . . . so mindmapping begins with a word or image that symbolizes what you want to think about placed in the middle of the page.
Step 2: Lighten Up!
Let go of the idea of finding a cure for cancer, ending hunger, solving the problem, or writing a report that your boss will love. Mindmapping is simply a brain-dumping process that helps stimulate new ideas and connections. Start with an open, playful attitude . . . you can always get serious later.
Step 3: Free Associate.
As ideas emerge, print one or two word descriptions of the ideas on lines branching from the central focus. Allow the ideas to expand outward into branches and subbranches. Put down all ideas without judgment or evaluation.
Step 4: Think Fast.
Your brain works best in 5- to 7-minute bursts, so capture that explosion of ideas as rapidly as possible. Key words, symbols, and images provide a mental shorthand to help you record ideas as quickly as possible.
Step 5: Break Boundaries.
Break through the “8Â½ Ã— 11 mentality” that says you have to write on white, letter-size paper with black ink or pencil. Use ledger paper or easel paper or cover an entire wall with butcher paper . . . the bigger the paper, the more ideas you’ll have. Use wild colors; fat, colored markers; crayons; or skinny, felt-tipped pens. You haven’t lived until you’ve mindmapped a business report with hot pink and dayglo orange crayons.
Step 6: Judge Not.
Put down everything that comes to mind, even if it is completely unrelated. If you’re brainstorming ideas for a report on the status of carrots in Texas and you suddenly remember you need to pick up your cleaning, put down “cleaning.” Otherwise your mind will get stuck like a record in that “cleaning” groove and you’ll never generate those great ideas.
Step 7: Keep Moving.
Keep your hand moving. If ideas slow down, draw empty lines, and watch your brain automatically find ideas to put on them. Or change colors to reenergize your mind. Stand up and mindmap on an easel pad to generate even more energy.
Step 8: Allow Organization.
Sometimes you see relationships and connections immediately and you can add subbranches to a main idea. Sometimes you don’t, so you just connect the ideas to the central focus. Organization can always come later; the first requirement is to get the ideas out of your head and onto the paper.