Spray Diagram - My Favorite Technique

This Spray Diagram, similar to the relationship diagrams, will show how issues are related to each other.

It is a means of structuring information and portraying it so that topics can be easily communicated as well as re-organised.

Its main strength lies in the fact that the information is drawn out in a way that is far more similar to the way our brains actually work than lists are. Their free-flowing nature allows for a far more freer thinking and all-encompassing appraisal of the topic you want to get organized.

Similar to Mind Maps, they differ because of the lack of rules. The basic ideas however are the same: Free-flowing association of ideas, core idea in the middle branching out into possible sub-sections. 

For me personally, this diagram type is the one I use the most. I have used it to organize projects, children, shopping lists, personal goal, studies, webpages... The list is endless. 

I have also used it to interview people. In preparation, I will end up with a holistic picture of what I would like to know and then, during the interview, to grasp and understand the concepts I have been given. 

Of all techniques, I think this is the one I would most suggest to people to adopt. You will never look back. 

What you need:

  • Blank piece of paper, colored pens
  • Charting possibilities as with larger diagrams
  • The mindset that you are not trying to achieve perfection. Relieve yourself from that barrier to free flowing thoughts and creative ideas!

How to do a Spray Diagram of your ideas

Here is the basic concept: 

Spray Diagram

  • In the center of the page, draw your main topic or core issue. The question you would like answered.
  • Around the core issue, decide on and draw the main sub-topics, representing them in a similar but visually different manner to the main issue. You can do this by using broken lines as in my diagrams, or different colors.
  • From each sub-topic, draw the issues or concerns radiating out from the sub-topic, connecting them with lines or arrows, as you see fit.

Note: Words may be written along the connecting lines, if you wish to highlight another aspect in the diagram, i.e. the name of a person responsible for that sub-topic, geographic area, title of document, customer name, etc.

This is a technique I strongly recommend everyone to learn.

Personally I use it for nearly everything I do.

Do try it! You will love it! 

Best wishes