One of the most overlooked tools to help leaders and organizations overcome challenges is brainstorming. We tend to want to jump to quick fixes whenever some kind of problem arises in our workplace. Brainstorming allows leaders and employees to examine any issue from a variety of perspectives and develop solutions based on richer information and more varied options. Here are some practical tips to help you brainstorm effectively.
1. Welcome and write down all ideas.
2. Do not judge or give opinions on the idea.
3. Stay away from debating the merits of any idea.
4. Don't worry whether the idea seems practical or not.
5. Encourage everyone in the room to share one idea.
6. Thank people for providing input.
7. No idea is too outlandish or strange.
8. Try not to lead the ideas in any certain direction.
9. Invite a wide range of people to brainstorm.
10. Keep brainstorming sessions brief.
How many of these concepts do you practice in your workplace? If you use them all you're probably aware that they can help you develop innovative approaches to deal with any challenge. The whole point of brainstorming is to open up the lines of communication and allow people to stretch their minds. Once you have the ideas out in the open they will suggest new opportunities and possibilities.
Savvy organizations develop new products, procedures and ideas from brainstorming sessions. The key is to create a safe atmosphere where people can share their wisdom. How will you create a work environment that promotes brainstorming?