How to Maximize Brainstorming in Your Organization

Darryl Bachmeier
Jun 26, 2019
Strategy


Need is the necessity of invention. However, we don’t always have the luxury of time to wait for inspiration to arrive before we produce innovation.

In this fast-paced and modern world, time is crucial all the time. Whether you are working on a solution to a problem, thinking of a way to battle a competitor, or looking to create a revolutionary product to get ahead of everyone in the market, it is beneficial if you and your team know how to bring your ideas together to reach a common goal.

For organizations, brainstorming paves the way for the best ideas that come.

Why Brainstorm?

Brainstorming is a great way to collaborate and get creative juices flowing.

For a leader, it is healthy to do brainstorming consistently and not only when faced with challenging situations. It stimulates the brain to continuously generate ideas, as well as ask questions that could potentially spark innovation.

When done within a group, brainstorming can collect more ideas from different perspectives. It allows the team to see the topic of discussion from many angles. When more eyes look at the same problem, it could lead to a better assessment of all matters pertinent to decision-making.

Organizations that incorporate brainstorming into their business planning reap a lot of benefits. And all of these revolve around working together to reach goals that benefit them as a whole.

It helps avoid mind burnout

Usually, it’s the decision-maker who does the brainstorming. But there are times that anything that becomes a company’s interest should be dealt with by the whole organization.

When more people are collaborating, the risk of mind burnout decreases. It allows team members to express their ideas without fearing judgment and overthinking. Again, the goal of brainstorming is to gather as many relevant ideas. The filtering comes in later.

It encourages collaboration

Collaboration allows team members to exercise their critical-thinking skills. It also cultivates a sense of responsibility being a valuable member of the team, that is, every idea matters and can become impactful.

Meanwhile, the team must know the difference between collaboration and groupthink. The latter is critical as it defeats the purpose of brainstorming since it results in a consensus without many inputs. To avoid groupthink, the leader must help the team feel comfortable expressing their ideas without regard to what others think.

It explores all the angles of the topic

Achieving a 360-degree view of the problem could entail a lot of time to do, but more manageable when more heads think.

Brainstorming helps your team look at a problem from different perspectives. We all have unique perceptions and approaches to problems due to experience or learned methods, and these differences can be beneficial when brainstorming.

It helps achieve a solution faster

Brainstorming takes time. However, the whole process of decision-making becomes relatively shorter because you were able to gather as many ideas right away.

It promotes creativity and innovation

Aside from problem-solving skills, brainstorming can drive creativity among teams. Depending on the approach, the process can inspire team members to think outside of the box and generate more creative but still relevant ideas.

Meanwhile, innovation can happen after realizing the consequences and risks pertinent to the ideas presented.

Brainstorming broadens your organization’s capacity to drive innovation by maximizing your members’ skills. Like what the adage says, two heads are better than one.

How to Maximize Every Brainstorming Activity?

Brainstorming’s goal is to encourage as many ideas (and questions) to pour in to help the leader make better decisions. That is, it focuses on quantity over quality.

For a brainstorming activity to be successful, it should create a non-judgmental atmosphere that resembles note-taking and mind mapping. It does not welcome criticisms, but the sharing sessions should remain respectful and professional. Everyone is highly encouraged to speak up about the topic and leaders are called to jot the ideas down.

The goal of brainstorming is not always finding solutions but to spring ideas. In the same way, it also welcomes questions to broaden the topic and explore more possibilities.

Most organizations prefer to provide more direction in every brainstorming activity by including answering the What-Where-When-Why-How questions aside from stating the topic. But ideally, a brainstorming activity should encourage all kinds of ideas so you’re sure that you don’t miss out on any detail.

Brainstorming constitutes a considerable amount of time to execute. Yet, we understand the time constraints hence different approaches work best given the situation. This is to maximize the time and arrive at the goal in the shortest time possible.

Another way to make the most of every brainstorming activity is to make the approach unconventional. It paves the way for more creative inputs. Having a more relaxed and casual atmosphere during brainstorming sessions encourages more ideas to be shared.

Brainstorming can also be a fun way to gather your team and make them more productive. Idea sharing is like professional socialization that not only benefits them personally but the organization as well.

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