With the Internet literally at our fingertips at any given point during our day, it feels like every fresh idea has been written about, thought of, and a meme has been generated. So, how are any of us supposed to find never thought of concepts? Well, start at the beginning (it’s a very good place to start) with brainstorming. Brainstorming within the office in conjunction with your team, is a great place to cultivate ideas and flesh out details. Do you feel a bit of writer’s block coming on? Try our tips to jump start your brainstorming session.
Hold a Meeting and Don’t Forget the Dry Erase Board
Try scheduling a day each week for one specific time that works for everyone on the team to come together and just throw ideas at each other. Don’t forget those great ideas by having a designated person write everything down on a dry erase board. That way, new ideas can be added and the ones that don’t make the cut can be erased. Once the meeting is over, have someone email those ideas to everyone involved. What’s the use of brainstorming ideas if everyone forgets what they are when the meeting is over?
Let Everyone’s Voice Be Heard
Let everyone in the meeting get a chance to share his/her opinion. The quietest person in the room may be filled with the best ideas. Encourage everyone to say as much as they would like but put an emphasis on the listening as well. Collaboration will come when you least expect it. Someone might have a great idea but they’re not sure where to go with it. By allowing everyone to speak, you might foster a new working relationship.
Give Yourself a Chance with Blind Writing
Grab a notepad, a pen, your imagination, and just write. Even if you write, “I still have nothing” nine times, by the tenth time, you might have something. Do this for 10 minutes at your desk and see what you can come up with. Those ideas may not be the best but they are something. Which is better than the nothing you had before.
Whether it’s on the sofa in the breakroom or at your desk, make sure you’re in a comfortable seat. Just try to relax and relive some stress. By being able to get into a comfort zone, your brain might tap into creative zones that you didn’t know you had before. This also goes hand-in-hand when brainstorming in a group. You have to be comfortable with your coworkers in order to brainstorm ideas to each other.
Focus on the Task at Hand
Going off topic in a group setting is inevitable. When walking into the brainstorming session, the person in charge has a specific goal for the agenda. When the conversation starts to stray, remind the group of the focus and bring it back to strategic brainstorming.
The Right Tools Make All the Difference
Not having the right office supplies on hand could be hindering your team from a successful brainstorming session. Easel boards are lightweight and portable, so they can be carried and set up wherever need be like if it’s a beautiful day outside and you want to gather some inspiration from nature.
A digital projector is a classic tool that has been around for ages that gets better with advances in technology. Any important ideas that need to be seen by the whole group can quickly be typed into a laptop and projected onto a big screen.
Last but not least is the electronic whiteboard. This is basically a dry erase board and a computer combined. Brainstorming ideas could be easier because they are written on the electronic whiteboard and then immediately emailed to everyone on the team. Once you have one of these, you’ll wonder how your whole team ever lived without one.
A little bit of brainstorming goes a long way. Post your go-to brainstorming tips on our Facebook page.