3 Things Good, Lean Visuals Have In Common

Good visuals that help plan, schedule, organize and communicate information are an essential part of a lean environment. Recent studies show that as high as 83% of human learning occurs visually.  Good visuals have a positive and sustainable impact on productivity, quality, equipment, reliability and employee engagement.

As a company that makes specialized magnetic whiteboards, Magnatag works with employees who are implementing lean programs in a variety of industries. Based on their experience, we have found there are some common characteristics of good visuals that make them successful in a lean environment including:


  1. They are easy to see: The human form of the HurtSpot safety board is eye catching and makes safety personal. Having your visuals located in the “right place” where people who need information can see it at a glance is important. Putting a safety awareness board in a break room or near a time clock helps drive your message home.
  1. They are engaging and easy to understand: Images like the HurtSpot board are self-explanatory and visually motivating. They grab everyone’s attention and encourage them to focus on working safely. The use of recognizable shapes and bright colors helps emphasize the message. Good visuals use universal symbols, images, color, size and position to communicate clearly in a lean environment.


  1. They are easy to use and maintain: This KPI Pyramid magnetic whiteboard is both simple and efficient. Employees post daily productivity information on the board with pens and magnets. The red and green magnets communicate from a distance while hand written results provide greater detail. Like a scoreboard, it keeps everyone informed. Unlike a computer, the board is always on and shares information with everyone 24/7.

Good visuals belong in a prime location and should share a clear message that is easy for everyone to understand. Complicated messages, overly busy graphics and highly detailed KPI’s can be hard to comprehend and are not as effective.

Good communication tools are important because they makes sure everyone is striving toward the same goal, whether it is safety, production rates or quality products. In an upcoming post, we will share a graphic showing what types of information are important to employees that will make your visuals more effective.

To find out more information about the examples in this post, please visit Magnatag Visible Systems website. 

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Published by

Victoria Burns

Victoria Burns is a Rochester, NY native and joined the Magnatag Visible Systems team right out of college. She is a graduate of Syracuse University’s Newhouse School of Journalism. With extensive knowledge in Magnatag Visible Systems’ history, she knows the ins and outs of scheduling, communication, productivity, information display problems. Burns has an invested interest in journalism and has been the editor of Magnatag Insight (www.magnatag.com/blog) for two years. In her free time, she enjoys traveling and spending time with her family and friends.

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