What Is Brainstorming?

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Brainstorming is the process of opening our minds to many new ideas. It is used to generate a lot of different ideas on a given topic. In addition, brainstorming is an excellent way of creating a lot of different, creative solutions to a problem.

How Does Brainstorming Work?

Brainstorming works by honing in on a problem and then coming up with a number of radical solutions to it. Ideas should intentionally be as broad and odd as they possibly can and should be developed as fast as possible.

Brainstorming is a lateral-thinking process. It is designed to assist you with breaking out of your thinking patterns into new ways of exploring things. During the course of brainstorming sessions, there should be no criticism of ideas. You are attempting to open possibilities as well as break down incorrect assumptions about the boundaries of the problem.

Judgments and analysis at this stage of the brainstorming process will stunt idea generation. Ideas should only be assessed when the brainstorming session has finished. Then you can explore solutions further by using conventional approaches.

If your ideas begin to dry up, it is possible for you to ‘seed’ the session with, for instance, a random word.

Is Group Brainstorming Effective?

Group brainstorming may be very effective as it utilises the experience as well as creativity of all members in the group. When individual members get to their limit on an idea, another member’s creativity, as well as experience, may take the idea to the next stage. Thus, group brainstorming tends to develop ideas in a lot more depth as opposed to individual brainstorming.

Brainstorming in a group may be risky for individuals. Valuable but odd suggestions may appear stupid at first sight. As a result, you should chair sessions tightly so that not-so-creative people do not crush these ideas and leave group members feeling embarrassed.

Group Brainstorming Image

What Are The Rules Of Brainstorming?

  • One person acts as a scribe and writes down the group’s ideas. A great way of doing this is to utilise a flip chart. This should be studied as well as evaluated after the session.
  • Define the problem that you want solved clearly and then lay out any criteria to be met.
  • Think of as many ideas and concepts as you possibly can and offer them up – even if you think they are silly! They may not be foolish and may trigger off ideas in other members. Let the ideas flow freely and quickly.
  • Build on the ideas of others.
  • Make sure that no one criticises or evaluates ideas during the session. Criticism brings in an element of risk for group members when offering up an idea. This stifles creativity and cripples the free-running nature of a good brainstorming session.
  • Make sure that the session is focused on the problem.
  • Encourage an enthusiastic, uncritical attitude among the members of the group.
  • Try to get everyone to contribute as well as develop ideas, including the quietest members of the group.
  • Let group participants have fun brainstorming. Encourage them to develop as many ideas as possible, from totally practical ones to outrageously impractical ones.
  • Welcome creativity.
  • Make sure that no train of thought is followed for too long a period of time.
  • Encourage individuals to develop other people’s ideas, or to use other ideas to create new ones

Where possible, members of the brainstorming group should come from as wide a range of disciplines as possible. This brings in a broad range of experience to the session and will help to make it more creative.

Brainstorming is a technique which is often used in the advertising world.

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