One of the greatest innovations of online whiteboards is their ability to structure your collaboration through pre-made, or self-created boards. These boards allow you to enhance your collaboration beyond the capabilities of simple whiteboards and operate on complex and effective templates.

The ability to structure your collaboration is critical for teams operating online, and in this article, we will walk through 9 boards that enhance your collaboration.

Since every team will need their boards to serve different functions, we’ve organized our boards into different categories that will surely meet your team’s needs. Keep reading to learn about the 9 boards that enhance your collaboration.

Business Model

Kanban

The kanban framework is one of the most commonly known and flexible frameworks to help teams/individuals organize their projects. Kanbans provide an easy, visual method of organization for teams to look at all of their tasks and prioritize the best path to completion.

Kanban frameworks prioritize transparency across projects and allow teams to view all their tasks in one aggregated place based on their levels of completion. This is critical when moving towards the completion of a project, and helps align everyone’s understanding to a shared reference point.

Using a kanban board is most useful to agile development teams, but it can be widely applicable to any team that is making a sprint or working on completing a project. For this reason, we see it as one of the best additions to an online workspace and a board that significantly helps enhance your collaboration.

Business Model Canvas providing a streamlined way for teams to analyze their business plan.

Business Model Canvas

A Business Model Canvas is one of the most simple frameworks for teams to use in order to analyze their current strategies and envision sites for improvement. It is most commonly used to assess your current business model and it allows users to visualize the building blocks of their current or proposed business model.

Business Model Canvases prioritize the fundamentals of creating a business plan and by visualizing these elements you gain a much clearer image of your possible threats and opportunities. Creating and visualizing your plan is a collaboration exercise that helps expose faulty assumptions and overall works to clarify your strengths and goals. For these reasons, we see it as a necessary board for any team planning their business approach.

Marketing

Retrospective

Retrospective analyses are some of the most flexible frameworks that teams can utilize, and can be applied to most any project or sprint. They provide task-based analyses of what went well, what went poorly, and actionable changes your team can make in order to avoid pitfalls and maximize success.

Because of their flexibility, retrospective templates may seem unnecessary and indirect. This is a commonly held misconception, and it’s important to not overlook following up on previous projects. Assessing your previous work is critical in order to optimize how you operate in the future, so taking time to do this may end up being the key factor that enables your future success. 

Because of their importance to future and past projects, retrospective boards are some of the most basic and effective collaboration exercises.

Persona Diagram allowing teams to diagram their principal user.

Persona Diagram

Having a solid understanding of your ideal customer is critical in developing a consistent marketing plan. Not only does identifying your principal user apply to marketing strategies, but it also enables you to optimize every level of your business model.

Persona diagrams allow you to take a deep dive into the details of your principal user, stakeholder, or any party you need to analyze. Doing so reveals traits, assumptions, and details about their intent that are not visible from a surface level analysis. 

These details are critical in determining your audience and their interactions with your product/service, and having a deep understanding of them allows you to properly target them. For these reasons, we see persona diagrams having a serious ability to enhance team collaboration.

Innovation

COSTAR

The Costar template represents innovation and the possibilities you can achieve when your business commits to innovative principles. With costar, you can develop a nuanced and unique value proposition while also answering multiple different questions surrounding the optimization of your business plan.

Being able to develop a comprehensive business plan while taking multiple factors into consideration, while also integrating a unique value proposition, allows you to align your solution directly towards your biggest strengths. Taking all of these factors into consideration is extremely important when you are developing your uniquely positioned solution.

Costar works best for any teams that are seeking innovative solutions for their product, service, or future workflow. It’s versatility and efficiency make it a top boar for enhancing your ability to collaborate.

COSTAR Template allowing teams to create unique, innovative solutions.

Agile Solution Building

The Agile Solution Building board is very helpful for teams that are seeking multiple perspectives on a group solution, or want to brainstorm multiple different individual ideas. This board is perfect for teams brainstorming and working towards group based solutions.

On this board you each develop one idea, and through a series of rounds take turns editing and revising each others ideas until everyone has played a part in all of the decisions. This allows teams to be communicative with each other and agile in the way they think about moving forward.

Because of the team based nature of solution finding, the agile solution building board is great for any teams that want to interlink their collaboration.

Product

Product Alignment

It’s critical when creating tasks for your current project that you align your team with the needs of your users. That is the principal use case for the Product Alignment board, and it is incredibly helpful at creating tangible tasks that directly associate your goals to your tasks.

This board lets you create ideas about who your audience is, what you provide, and how you will impress them. With those elements, you take one idea from each and use them to create an action statement about a tangible way you can move forward.

Because of these abilities, product alignment is extremely useful for both narrowing your target plan and audience and developing realistic tasks to achieve your goals. These factors make it a great board that enhances collaboration.

SWOT Matrix enabling streamlined analysis of strengths and weaknesses.

SWOT Matrix

SWOT grids are some of the most commonly used templates for teams analyzing their business models, and they are widely applicable outside of that as well. Any team that is analyzing a certain approach, solution, or overall model can use the SWOT grid to great effect.

SWOT allows you to break down your project based on it’s potential strengths & weaknesses, while analyzing possible opportunities and threats. This analysis both helps you prepare for how to improve and what to focus on, and also gives you some information about your positioning relative to other companies in your ecosystem.

SWOT’s are very popular because of their versatility and their ability to help any teams with their future projects, making them a simple board that helps enhance collaboration.

Customer journey maps

Storyboarding

As stated before, understanding your customer’s mindset is critical in order to target their specific needs. While other boards like the persona diagram help understand their overall mindset, it’s also important to flesh out specific flows and their process through a certain scenario.

Storyboarding allows for you to diagram a specific flow from the users perspective, analyzing their intentions and goals through each step of the process. Being able to break down your user’s intentions through each step of a specific flow is really illuminating for their intentions, and as a team helps direct your project to meet their specific needs.

Conclusion

These 9 boards are extremely helpful to teams that struggle with collaboration, and all provide unique and effective optimization for your business. Here is a quick breakdown of all 9 templates:

  1. Kanban: A quick and effective outline of your current tasks.
  2. Business Model Canvas: An established model to visualize a future/existing business plan.
  3. Retrospective: An easy and effective way to assess your previous work.
  4. Persona Diagram: A streamlined board that targets your principal user.
  5. COSTAR: A template that prioritizes innovation and creates a unique and relevant solution.
  6. Agile Solution Building: An easy method to brainstorm multiple group solutions.
  7. Product Alignment: The best way to create actionable tasks that target your users needs.
  8. SWOT Matrix: The most simple method to organize your strengths and weaknesses.
  9. Storyboarding: A step by step method to diagraming your principal users experience with your product/service.

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