Rules are made to be broken?

Some people find the idea of setting boundaries at the start of any creative session a contradiction but I find it helps if you lay out some ground rules at the start. Let everyone know that the ideas will be judged in time but the session will be split out into periods of generation and evaluation. By all means put your ideas through a murder board when they’re ready and when people have had their say.

What you don’t say can be just as important as what you do – a sigh, shrug, bored expression – they all constitute group brainstorm tumbleweed and are just as bad as knocking the ideas out loud.

High-performing creative teams know this. Design firm IDEO is regularly voted one the most innovative companies in the world. Here are their five principles of brainstorming:

  • Stay focused on the topic
  • Encourage wild ideas
  • Defer judgment
  • Build on the ideas of others
  • One conversation at a time

Here’s how they do it

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