for Government Organizations
following are tools, solutions, tips, tricks,
secrets, and best practices for government organizations.
Be sure to share this page with your colleagues
so they can benefit from them as well.
Influence of Graphics in Government Agencies
Graphics make it much easier for your audience
to understand and remember your presentation or
any other materials which will communicate your
organization's services/ideas. Studies have also
shown that we need words, concepts, and ideas
attached to an image or else we won't remember
the product or service. Visuals paint the picture
of who the presenter is, what they stand for,
and how the audience may benefit. Graphics sell
because of their ability to influence quickly
and be remembered. How you use graphics greatly
affects how you and your organization are perceived.
Studies show that we often ignore
formal decision-making models when deciding on
a purchase because of time constraints, incomplete
information, the inability to calculate consequences,
and other variables. Intuitive judgment (judgment
based on emotions) is employed for most decisions.
Visuals in presentations and other communications
can quickly affect us cognitively and emotionally.
When used improperly, the consequences can be
dire for your organization. However, when graphics
are consistent, clear, and compelling, you will
leave a lasting, positive impression on your audience.
In addition, the same theory can be applied to
presentations performed interdepartmentally or
to executive-level officials. Consider the following:
- Professional, visually appealing
graphics increase your likelihood of success
by 43% (3M-sponsored study at the University
of Minnesota School of Management).
- Research at the 3M Corporation
concluded that we process visuals 60,000 times
faster than text.
- 83% of what we learn is through
our eyes according to a study by the United
States Armed Forces
- According to Dale Carnegies
Training, graphics allow the audience to follow
at their own speed because visuals accommodate
all learning styles.
- 200% improved learning when
visuals were used. (University of Wisconsin
- 40% less time to explain complex
ideas with visuals (Wharton School study)
- 38% improved retention because
of graphics. (Harvard University study)
This does not mean that graphic
communication is better than text. However, the
combination of graphics and words has a communicative
power that neither singularly possesses. J.R.
Levin said it best in A Transfer of Appropriate
Process Perspective of Pictures in Prose:
"Pictures interact with text to produce levels
of comprehension and memory that can exceed what
is produced by text alone."
Government Agency Graphics
When creating graphics for your department or
agency consider the following:
- What should this graphic say
about your service or idea? (And why does it
matter to your audience?)
- Who is your audience? Would they
understand technical terms or prefer an overview?
- How do you want to say it? What
form of graphic (photograph, area chart, illustration,
timeline, etc.) will best reach your audience
and help them to understand the idea/concept?
Rules for Creating Government Graphics
- All graphics should play a specific
role and have a reason for being chosen and
- Stay consistent.
- Show or say it correctly. Don't
try to be original.
- Keep it clean and simple. Too
much visual clutter can be overwhelming and
lose the primary objective of your message.
- Label elements directly to avoid
confusion. This rule is especially true if you
are introducing new image and ideas.
- Use recognizable imagery. Seeing
a familiar face evokes trustworthiness in your
audience. This is one reason celebrities are
used in advertisements.
- Focus on your audience. Show
your audience in your graphics. Allow your audience
to see themselves learning, applying, and benefiting
from your services.
a Graphics Template
Consistency throughout your communication
materials is the main reason to create a template
for your presentations and maintain a database
of graphics. You don't want your audience wondering
why certain slides in a presentation are colored
differently (if there's no reason) or why different
illustrations are used to explain the same concept.
These differences will distract from your message
and you want your message to be communicated clearly
To maintain a database of graphics
for your organization, consider the following:
- On your server create a folder
specifically for graphics (primarily photographs,
illustrations, charts, and logos).
- Create subfolders for each graphic
type (i.e., Photos of Department Members, Photos
of Organization Events, Charts of Financial
Statistics and Schedules, Organization Logos).
- Inform everyone in your organization
of the availability of these images.
- Create a standards
guide to inform your associates when, where,
and how they can use these graphics. Include
- Photo or illustration size
- Type of communications in
which to use the graphics (i.e., for presentations,
interdepartmental communications, PR materials)
- Logo guides for size, colors,
- Guidelines for stationery
such as margins, fonts, logos, colors, and
basic set up of body text and address
To create a template for presentations
in PowerPoint, use the following as a guide. Open
a blank document and populate it with this information:
- Title slide template
- Background templates (be sure
to include all versions for different sections
or larger titles)
- Primary color
- Secondary color
- Tertiary color
- Color palette of boxes tinted with your
- Font and text styles
- Font style
- Font size (For graphics, use at least
12 pt. for best visibility when projected
on a screen)
- Font color
- Bullet styles
- Labeling styles
- Box styles
(different boxes for org charts, flow charts,
benefits boxes, etc.)
- Arrow styles
- Line style (width and color)
- Logos for your organization
and any partnering agencies
- Samples of graphic icons/photos
used in other graphics (e.g., blue cylinder
- Samples of graphic styles (area
charts, bar charts, etc. used within presentation)
You need to share complex information
and solutions quickly. You need
to share critical data and make sure it sticks.
Unfortunately, you have to make it happen with
very little time, money, and resources. You want
your briefing or document to look great, command
attention,, and leave the best
impression. Then you need high-quality, powerful
graphics. What do you do? Great news, you have
Do-it-yourself graphics guide
Ready-to-go graphics on DVD
Fast Class seminars (1 hour quick classes)
5. Business graphic library
Government employees use Billion
Dollar Graphics solutions to help conceptualize
powerful graphics. Other professionals like you
use the easy-to-learn processes to turn their
ideas and words into clear, communicative, compelling:
- Briefing graphics
- Presentation graphics
- Storyboard graphics
- Information graphics
- Technical graphics
- Management graphics
- Tactical graphics
- Battlespace graphics
- Resource Allocation
- Any visual solution
waste anymore of your energy, money, and time
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start or add to your existing graphics library.
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more about the DVD.)
Billion Dollar Graphics training/workshops
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specialist, or in almost any other profession—visual
communication training will help you and your
organization succeed. (Learn
more about the Training and Workshops.)
Solutions for Government Agencies
Your challenges are unique.
Perhaps your goal is to increase the quality of
your visuals or analyze your existing process
and develop a better system for generating clear,
communicative, compelling graphics. Allow Billion
Dollar Graphics to be of service. We are available
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more about 24 Hour Company.)
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Fast Class Seminars