3 Brainstorming Techniques to Fuel Your Next Idea

What’s occurred since “brainstorming” was coined some 70 years in the past is a bit of like the method of brainstorming itself. As a result of it was such an attention-grabbing idea, brainstorming has spawned variations that search to enhance upon the unique thought. That’s much like its personal course of: One good thought begets one other and so forth.

Whereas there are some floor guidelines which may be helpful (like the daddy of brainstorming Alex Osborn’s 4 tenets), there isn’t any single proper manner for a bunch to collaboratively generate concepts. Contemplate these methods, and be happy to adapt them to be used along with your group. (And, as at all times, share your good concepts with us!)

1. Brainwriting

Like brainstorming, has the objective of producing plenty of concepts in a short while. However in contrast to brainstorming, it’s achieved through writing, not talking. Some teams have members rapidly and anonymously write one thought on a card. All people’s concepts are taped to a wall, and the group votes on those that look most promising for additional exploration.

A variation of brainwriting is known as the 6-3-5 methodology. Six members sit in a bunch with a facilitator. Every participant produces three concepts each 5 minutes, writes them on a worksheet and passes them to the participant to their proper, and so forth. Every one that receives the worksheet is to learn what others have written, which supplies the impetus for that particular person producing extra concepts. Six rounds in half-hour is meant to generate 108 new concepts.

2. Thoughts mapping 

This entails making a diagram with a central idea drawn as a picture on the middle of a clean web page or whiteboard. Contributors use photos, symbols and phrases in various colours branching out from—however nonetheless related to—the central picture. Tangential concepts could also be denoted as “twigs” radiating from these branches.

In a bunch setting, thoughts mapping can enhance collaboration classes by serving to folks visualize ideas and connections, which permits them to observe conversations and contribute extra successfully.

3. Brainswarming 

This goals to get enter from a wide range of members, whatever the manner they assume or their character sorts. Not like brainstorming, during which talkative folks could drown out shy people, brainswarming, which was developed by psychologist Tony McCaffrey, is carried out with written notes. It’s designed to get even higher concepts, and extra of them, than brainstorming.

McCaffrey has defined the brainswarming course of this manner: Write the objective on the high of the diagram and some recognized sources on the backside. Instruct members to not speak, however to speak with Publish-it notes and features connecting them on the diagram. Some folks will begin by refining the objective, whereas others will analyze how the designated sources might be used or will add extra sources. In some unspecified time in the future, the notes and features will join, indicating that the 2 teams are discovering methods to make use of the sources to resolve the issue.

This text was revealed in September 2014 and has been up to date. Photograph by GaudiLab/Shutterstock

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