Brainstorming Ground Rules

Ground Rules for a more successful brainstorming

For a brainstorming session to be successful, some ground rules should be set and followed by the group, when we say ground rules here we do not mean putting any restrictions on the solutions the group can imagine. the main goal is to give them the freedom to suggest new creative and effective solution but to focus on one area at a time and help keep the group's focus, some excellent ground rules to achieve this are :

 

Suspend Judgments : The first and most important ground rule for brainstorming is to suspend all judgments, there is no such thing as a bad idea. Ask the group to leave their judges outside the door before they enter into the brainstorming session and they shouldn't worry , they can pick them back on their way out. Give each idea its time and space the quickest way to kill creativity is to shut down ideas with comments like " that won't work" or " That's not what we're looking for" or " this too crazy".

 

Focus on one topic at a time: Ask them to choose a topic from the list and focus their conversation on that point until they’re ready to move on. This technique helps prevent them from jumping around from topic to topic.

 

Set time limits: Some of the best ideas come when people are pressed for time.. Keep the brainstorming short, and then spend quality time refining the ideas. stick to the time limits 

 

Quantity not Quality of ideas: The quantity of ideas is what matters during the brainstorming phase not the quality, the goal from brainstorming is to generate as many ideas as possible, evaluating each one takes place during further steps or applying other tools like SCAMMPERR Brainstormed results as one method. Generate as many ideas as possible before weighing and evaluating a single one.

 

Create a parking lot: If one of the parties has an idea for a different agenda item, quickly jot it down next to that topic call it the parking lot, if someone thinks of something they need to check out or want to add another topic for discussion, into the parking lot it goes.

 

Cross fertilize: Picking up ideas from other people and suggest others leading from them. someone may say a word that would spark an idea in someone else's head.

 

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