Brainstorming is used as a method to generate ideas to solve a problem. It is a creativity technique done in groups to find a solution for a specific problem. It puts together the list of ideas given by the member in a free-thinking environment. Brainstorming is popular mostly in design teams because they have to think out of the box and in every direction. By brainstorming, we can cover the problems with many ideas given by the members and can have many creative ways. You can have every imaginable solution to the problem.
Some rules that can help your team in brainstorming:
- There should be a facilitator who can conduct the meeting.
- Give a chance to everyone to give their creative ideas.
- There should be a time limit given to them to think.
- Let them ask questions from you about the topic, the clearer they will be about the topic, the more creative ideas you can get.
- You can encourage weird ideas too, do not shut the person down, listen to them. Maybe you can consider their ideas.
- Build on others ideas, make someone else’s idea more creative.
- Do not make it a fish market, allow everyone to speak but one at a time.
- Do not be negative or give immediate judgment.
Brainstorming can be fun for some people, but some people do not like it because they are too shy to speak or introverts. Extroverts can speak too much and can dominate the introvert. The leader of the team should lead it in a solution-focused environment. There are ways by which you can make the brainstorming fun like a pinboard, and everyone can participate.
Give their brains a little break. Your brain should be clear to generate creative ideas. You can give them the activity at the start that can help them in brainstorming. Ask your participants questions that can help them to open their minds. Give them a silly question like what will you do if your sunglasses were x-rayed vision, once they start thinking about the ideas, it means they are ready to be creative.
Outside of the box
Sometimes the office environment can be stressful, and it gets impossible to think creatively. Take your time outside of the office. Take them to a coffee shop, or an amusement park. Take them anywhere that can help them in generating creative ideas and can think outside of the box. Changing the environment of a person can help them in their creativity. It will be a fun and creative trip where everyone will be giving their ideas in a not so boring environment. Everyone can get comfortable and comfy in that environment, and no one will have that office pressure, they can have their time to clear their mind from other problems and think creatively.
Ask for the worst ideas
You always ask your team to give you good and creative ideas but now ask them to give the worst and terrible ideas for the situation. Write the problem on the board and ask them to start giving the worst idea they can think of. The ideas can be stupid, but maybe you can think of something creative from that idea.
- It will create a fun environment; everyone can laugh.
- A positive feeling around the meeting.
- There will be no pressure and time limit.
- People can get more comfortable.
Looking for a problem from an opposite perspective can help you a lot. It can give you real ideas, and you can always make them a little better.
Maybe it has been a long time since you and your team picked up some colours and markers? Give your team colour books and colour pencils. Even if they are not good with drawing or doodling, tell them that it should not be the perfect art piece. A study shows that doodling can help you to alert your mind. Doodlers perform 29% better than non-doodlers. Many people can start daydreaming while doing a boring task. Colouring can help them in being creative. So next time you get a lot of colour books and markers for your meeting.
Walls can talk
This technique is best for boring meetings. Write down the problems or project your team needs to work on each wall. Write questions on the walls. Give your team members the pad of sticky notes and tell them to walk around the room, see the problems and write any solution that is coming to their mind anonymously. Set a time limit of 10 to 15 minutes. Encourage creative thoughts. In the end, you can gather everyone’s suggestions and can work on it as a team. You can ask the team member to vote for a better idea.
Bring an outsider
Your team consists of mostly the same people. There is a group of the same people with the same minds every week. The same ideas, same patterns, and disagreements. Everything repeats it selves when you are with the same people every week. Why not change it a little bit? Bring an outsider in the meeting. We all know a designer will only think like a designer, by bringing another person who is not known to the environment can give their honest opinions and ideas, and he can be work as your customer. You can know your customers’ point of view. You can bring any person from your office, but he should not be the person who knows your work, that is how that person can come up with unique ideas from an entirely different perspective.
Choose any of the ways you want to make your meeting fun and creative. No one likes to sit in a boring meeting and generate ideas like the old style. Take them out, make them think out of the box, give them colours, help them get comfortable. These things can surely help your team to get creative and you can and the best ideas. Everyone loves a little bit of weirdness. Get that creative person out of you and start brainstorming!
Brainstorming is often considered difficult particularly for people who are not creative; however, if all the above-mentioned approaches are adopted, one will be able to expand his/ her thinking capacity and be able to brainstorm the ideas.
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