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If you work in the creative sector, or work in a role where you’re required to regularly come up with new ideas, learning to brainstorm properly could really make a difference in your role (it’s not just about gathering your colleagues together in a room with a whiteboard!). As specialists in creative and media recruitment in London, we understand that there are many ways to brainstorm, depending on the question or problem you’re trying to solve, and how your group works best. Common methods include:
One of the most popular brainstorming methods, group brainstorming refers to a group of people who have congregated in order to bounce ideas off one another. They would typically note these down on a whiteboard and/or post-it notes for the duration of the session. This is a great way to encourage a large quantity of ideas and encourages out-of-the-box thinking.
Anonymous brainstorming also refers to a group of people, this time with all participants in possession of their own pen and paper. They are given a set time to write all their ideas down, before handing them in to the facilitator anonymously, and voting on them as part of the group. Anonymous brainstorming works particularly well if there are members of the team who aren’t confident in sharing their ideas.
The passing technique happens when a group sits in a circle and one person writes down their initial idea, which they pass to the left. The next person reads it before adding their own idea, and the session ends when the paper has completed one full round of the circle. Each group member then explains their ideas, and all participants vote on the best. Choose this brainstorming method if you want to capitalise on participants adding to each other’s ideas.
Once you’ve chosen the best method, there are a few rules to abide by to make sure you’re getting the most out of your session.
Solve one problem or question: Each brainstorming session should focus on one, clearly-defined question, plainly understood by everyone in the session.
Quantity counts: The more ideas that are produced, the better chance of coming up with the best possible idea!
No judgement zone: Establish that no idea is too wild, big or out of budget, as these ideas may actually inspire the most inventive solution.
Encourage collaboration: Invite all participants to add to a good idea, as this will keep the creative juices flowing and make use of all the brain power in the room.
Appoint a group facilitator: this person will oversee the discussion and keep it on track, in order to avoid a drift on a tangent.
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