Your Life Story Pictures™ – A creative new way to tell your own or someone else’s life story!

A person’s life is a rich tapestry of events, influences, emotions and experiences that create a unique story. No one person’s story is the same as another.

Capturing this story visually creates a unique artistic record of person’s life journey and can be an ideal gift to:

  • Celebrate a life event
  • Reward achievements
  • Help commemorate a colleague, friend or loved-one

Over at our new sister site Your Life Story Pictures™, you can find out more about how I create rich detailed pictures of people’s life stories using techniques I’ve developed over the last 12 years working here at

Feel free to contact me to find out more about this exciting new service from Your Life Story Pictures™.

All the best,


John Ashton – Founder of Crackerjack Visual Thinking and Your Life Story Pictures™

Achieving your organisation’s Vision: Develop your Organisation

In this blog episode, I talk about the importance of alining your systems, processes and organisational behaviours with your Vision to deliver a great customer experience and build trust in your organisation.

To discuss achieving your organisations vision in more detail, please do get in touch using the options below.

Get in touch…

Phone: +44 (0)115 6483381

Achieving your organisation’s Vision: Develop your People

In this blog episode, I talk about how aligning the skills, knowledge and behaviours of your people to your Vision is vital in enabling your Vision to be achieved.

To discuss achieving your organisations vision in more detail, please do get in touch using the options below.

Get in touch…

Phone: +44 (0)115 6483381

Achieving your organisation’s Vision: Develop your Vision

In this blog episode, I talk about how visualising your organisations Vision can improve communication, understanding and business performance.

To discuss achieving your organisations vision in more detail, please do get in touch using the options below.

Get in touch…

Phone: +44 (0)115 6483381

Achieving your organisation’s Vision: A joined-up approach is vital!

Having a Vision and then successfully achieving it requires a coordinated approach focusing on three key activities: Communicating, Enabling and Embedding. In this blog episode, I share my thoughts on the importance ensuring you have a joined-up approach to these key activities (and what can happen if you don’t!):

To discuss achieving your organisations vision in more detail, please do get in touch using the options below.

Get in touch…

Phone: +44 (0)115 6483381

Latest testimonial for Crackerjack Visual Thinking

“I worked alongside John when we were both supporting the Planning Organisation within Rolls Royce with their transformation programme.

John has a fantastic ability to help teams articulate a vision and really draw out of the organisation what it is they are trying to achieve through listening to the conversations, and honing in on what really matters.

John has the unique ability to come up with something that the organisation can get behind and translate this into easy to digest, clear and simple visuals.

These are more than just a set of pictures though, they are a great tool to help build the narrative around the need for change, support the communications messaging and storytelling and give colleagues and businesses something that they can easily understand.

Louise Bull | Communications Director

Keep calm and focus on your vision

Before I continue, I recognise and acknowledge that the current Coronavirus situation is really tough for many many people and livelihoods and jobs are at risk (putting aside the obvious health implications of the virus). I therefore write this post with that in mind and in the genuine belief that focusing on the future can provide some potential help during these difficult times.

It’s natural and a necessity for people and organisations to be responding tactically at this time to ensure their businesses are able to operate in some way, shape or form during this pandemic. Completely understandable and a requirement of any responsible business.

However, it can be easy for business owners to take their eyes off the long term vision of their business (I know I’ve done it!). It’s also easy to forget to learn from the current situation – there are many valuable lessons learnt already and to be learnt over the coming weeks. So here are some ideas I offer to help:

  • Take time at the end of each day to think about:
    • What went well and what could have gone better?
    • What processes could I change to make things work more smoothly?
    • How could technology help me do things more efficiently?
    • Are there any opportunities to use tech’ to help me work even more collaboratively with my team and customers (remotely/virtually)?
    • Has working from home/remotely actually improved mine/my teams productivity and effectiveness?
  • Every few days set aside time to think about:
    • Is there anything I’ve learnt over the last few days that would fundamentally change my long-term vision for my business?
    • Is there anything I’ve learnt over the last few days which will help make my business more resilient in the future?
    • Are there any new opportunities I’ve identified for the business which I can plan for or take action now to achieve?

Taking the time to think about and act on the above will pay dividends for your business both now and after this situation comes to an end. You may even find that your vision for your business alters to a greater or lesser degree due to what we’re all experiencing at the moment. But it will need you to ‘look up not down’ during these tough times.

Good luck and as always if Crackerjack can be of help do contact us.

All the best,


Meetings don’t need to stop: they just need to be virtual, visual and engaging!

Just a quick note to say that meetings don’t need to stop during these challenging times! Work needs to continue for social and economic reasons – it just needs to be done in a different way.

There are many great on-line ways for teams to meet virtually and talk.

However, please remember that virtual meetings need the same (if not more) planning than your ‘normal’ face to face meetings! Here’s a quick checklist:

• Be clear on the purpose and outcomes you desire for your meeting

• Plan the flow of your meeting, weaving together inputs (not too many!), activities, feedback mechanisms and action planning to create a clear path towards the meeting outcomes.

• Check and re-check the on-line meeting platform you will be using for the meeting. Check that all your participants can access the meeting platform and have the log-on details required.

• Don’t forget that just like face to face meetings, introductions, ice-breakers and energisers still need to be part of your meetings. Design virtual versions of these activities for use during your meeting.

• Use pictures and diagrams to frame conversations, drive discussion and engage your participants. And I’m not talking about 80 page PowerPoint decks!!!

We hope you find the above helpful.

Crackerjack is able to offer an on-line meeting facilitation service should you need help running your virtual meetings and virtual events. Please do CONTACT US for more information if we can be of help.

John Ashton – Crackerjack Visual Thinking

How Crackerjack Visual Thinking helped ValueLicensing visualise their their organisational vision (in their words)…

David Hubbard | Managing Director | ValueLicensing

“ValueLicensing wanted to find an effective way to communicate our vision and strategy to everyone within our business, in manner that would be both memorable and unambiguous. We reached out to John to see if he could help us visualise both this and key business messages to existing and new employees.

John’s approach was to work closely with the directors and senior management team to understand who we are, what we do and why we do it. John facilitated a number of workshops during which he spent time listening and contributing to the sessions to allow him draft the first visualisation of the company strategy.

The artwork produced was excellent and John was more than happy to make tweaks until we were happy with the finished product. The visualisation was communicated to the business and was received with positive feedback from across the team and we have referred his work to other organisations.

John’s approach, professionalism, and quality of work are excellent and I personally recommend John and ‘Crackerjack Visual Thinking’ to anyone looking for ways to communicate more effectively across the business. Thank you John.”