Yesterday I had the opportunity to lead a brainstorming session for an upcoming vehicle launch that I'm working on. In preparation for this meeting, I consulted one of my old college textbooks, Strategic Communications Planning for Effective Public Relations and Marketing (Wilson & Ogden, 2004), for some ideas on how to conduct the most effective brainstorming sessions. I thought I'd share a few ideas with you here, and in the true spirit of brainstorming, ask for your ideas as well. Here are some of the author's (my paraphrasing) tips:
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
1. Brainstorming should last no less than five minutes and no longer than 20.
2. Brainstorming is not the time to evaluate ideas. If you think it, say it. By thinking of something and not saying it you're silently evaluating your own ideas. Wilson and Ogden go so far as saying that even laughter is a form of evaluation.
3. Record the session for review later.
4. Skip the details. State your idea and then move on to another one. Specific details should be reserved for evaluation later on.
These are only a few of the brainstorming tips from the textbook, but I've found they work very well. I wasn't able to steer the brainstorming yesterday in exactly this direction, but we came close enough and generated some awesome ideas. What else have you found effective in brainstorming sessions?