Why is Effective Brainstorming in the Workplace Vital?
The pressure for companies to generate new ideas and improvements can be overwhelming and that calls for effective brainstorming in the workplace by business teams.
Continuous new product or service creation seems to be mandatory in the workplace these days. There’s a demand from your boss to find new ways to improve the work process, your customers want to see a different approach than anyone else has shown, or you’re a business owner and you recognize that without flagging yourself as someone who stands out from the rest, you’re going to sink among all the other “me too” product or service competitors.
Can you create a mental spark of new ideas as simply as you see a spark when you touch two wires together?
The answer is – you can.
The first thing you need to do is quit thinking of ideas as things that just happen. You’ve heard of brainstorming, right? That’s a situation where people decide to cognitively generate ideas. They make the decision that they will create ideas within a timeframe – not that they will sit around the office for days, weeks or months waiting on some mysterious Muse to appear and give them a sign.
How do we brainstorm effectively?
There are techniques for effective brainstorming in the workplace employed by successful work teams.
First, write down all known facts and assumptions about the subject at hand. Then for each fact or assumption, ask “what if…?” Take the opposing view in your question.
“What if something else could create the same result?”
“If we didn’t have a specific resource, then how would we create this?”
“Suppose everyone called in sick one day, then how would we minimize the damage?”
“What if I had only 10 minutes to do this – is there a template I could use over and over again to speed things up?”
Always challenge assumptions.
Strip things away
Often, we get caught up in finding new ideas to add to the existing processes we have in place. But it’s as valid to think about cutting away ideas as it is creating new ones. You might have two different products in mind to create, and two different websites to market them. However by focusing on cutting out ideas you may discover that there is a core group who require both products – and then build just one website aimed at that core group.
So, ideas that take away work are sometimes more beneficial than those that do.
Use different discovery tools
Many people swear by mind maps. Some prefer a word narrative document – and others prefer spreadsheets. Get away from your comfort level by using a different medium to input your ideas out into and cull ideas out of. The process will feel different and make your brain respond differently – and often more creatively.