Brainstorming is an one of the best way of eliciting many creative ideas for an area of interest. Structured brainstorming gives a lot of creative ideas about any given problem or scenario. It provides diversion type of thinking, mainly it focuses on a problem, and then coming up with many radical solutions to it.
It helps to generate lot of ideas on a particular issue and then decide which idea is the best solution for the problem. It is not simple or random activity needs to be structured and it follows brainstorming rules.
This technique is best applied in a group of 6 to 8 persons as it draws on the experience and creativity of all group members. In case the group members are not available it can be conducted with single person also. It’s a cheap and easy way of getting ideas. Should be performed in a relaxed environment. Conducted by a facilitator. The facilitator responsible for guiding the session, encouraging participation and writing down the ideas.
Brainstorming works best with a different group of people, group members should come from different departments across the organization.
Prepare for brainstorming
- Arrange a comfortable meeting environment for the session. Make sure that you have the proper tools and resources to conduct the session.
- Include people from various backgrounds to collect the various thoughts and pick the best one.
- Set the time limit 6-8 hours for the session.
Conduct the session
- Define your problem or issue to the group members.
- Once the brainstorming starts, note down all the points in a paper or in a white board.
- Do not criticize the participants for their thoughts.
- Encourage everyone to contribute their idea.
End the session
- Wrap up the session if once the time is up.
- Make a note of all the given points and later take out the best possible idea out of it.
- Keep a record of it for further use.
Advantages of Brainstorming:
- It is very cost effective.
- If the group members are not available it can be conducted with single person.
- Easy technique to understand.
- Easy way to get a lot of ideas.
- Less resources are required.
Disadvantages of Brainstorming:
- People do not participate easily.
- Discussion can go into too much detail.
- May have repeats of opinions.
- May not end up with usable solutions.