Why You Should Encourage Doodling In Meetings


Have you ever had a boss, supervisor, or colleague encourage you to doodle during their presentation or meeting? I’m guessing…..probably not. Doodling isn’t one of those activities that’s looked on in a positive light, and it is certainly not encouraged. When I’ve spoken in front of a group of people and noticed someone staring at their paper while writing I haven’t been so keen on the activity myself.

Although, recently, I have been to a couple meeting planning events where this was a hot topic and thought I would share some interesting doodling facts. It just might make your next meeting the best meeting ever!

According to Sunni Brown, a doodle expert, there are 4 key cognitive benefits of doodling:

  1. Doodling can increase creativity: By using 3 different learning techniques at the same time (visual, kinesthetic, and auditory) your mind is able to absorb more information, which enhances the way you learn and think. You’re not tied to the “one-dimensional” way of learning.
  2. People who doodle retain more information: According to a study done by Professor Jackie Andrade, people who doodle retain almost 30% more information than those who do not doodle. If you’d like to read the study, click here.
  3. Doodling improves your concentration: Doodling in meetings actually keeps you present in the moment. Often times we find ourselves daydreaming or becoming unfocused on the discussion or presentation at-hand, but doodlers are actually reinforcing their brains to stay focused.
  4. Doodling helps you see the big picture: Often times we find ourselves zoning in on one particular takeaway or detail, which prohibits us from seeing the big picture. Doodlers do not have this problem. They typically do not overthink any one part of the discussion, which allows them to stay focused on the bigger picture.

If this is a topic you’re interested in, I encourage you to check out the links below. I’ve included two clips of Sunni Brown, who is the expert on this topic. The first link is to an interview with Sunni Brown by CNN and the second is a TedTalk, which is a little longer, but gives you a great perspective on the topic.

Sunni Brown interview

Sunni Brown TEDTalks

Are any of you doodlers? If so, what experiences have you had during business meetings? Have you been called out? Has it been frowned upon? Or…has it been encouraged? I would love to hear your stories.


Here you'll find ideas, tips, and techniques to help make your next offsite your best meeting yet.We've learned a lot during the 15,000+ meetings we've hosted, and we never stop learning (and sharing) because meetings and teams are always evolving. Be sure to leave comments and join the conversation!