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What Are the 4 Golden Rules of Brainstorming in a Business Environment?

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Brainstorming can be an effective way of finding a solution to a particular problem and it is a popular tactic in a business environment.

It is now easier than ever before to get everyone’s heads together even if they are not in the same location thanks to meeting room software and that allows you the opportunity to get input from lots of different team members and external sources.

So, now that you have a way to organize a business meeting wherever you are the key question is what are the main rules of engagement when it comes to brainstorming?

Don’t instantly dismiss anything

One of the golden rules of brainstorming is to retain an open mind and take the view that there is no such thing as a bad idea when you are first thrashing out a range of suggestions and opinions.

Obviously, you can’t go with every idea that is put forward and some of them won’t be that good when you think them through, but the fundamental principle is to encourage everyone to contribute and feel comfortable speaking up.

If a person thinks that their thoughts and ideas aren’t valued they might not contribute as much to the brainstorming meeting, so don’t dismiss anything when you first open up the discussion.

Groups don’t always come up with the best ideas

You could argue that the fundamental principle of brainstorming is to get everyone together and encourage a group discussion but it would be unwise to dismiss the idea of individual brainstorming too.

You could ask everyone to do a bit of individual brainstorming and work on their own to find a solution, before getting everyone together to discuss these ideas as a group.

A combination of individual and group brainstorming could be the most effective approach.

Never mind the quality in the beginning

Another important point about successful brainstorming is that too many businesses tend to focus too much on quality over quantity.

The problem with this approach to brainstorming is that it can set a tone for the meetings that discourage creative thinking because everyone is trying to come up with that one killer idea rather than just throwing everything out to see how it fits.

It is often far better to prioritize quantity over quality at the outset and then filter out the rejects so that you are left with quality solutions at the end of the process.

Try the silent approach

Lively discussion is always encouraged when the purpose is brainstorming but another approach that tends to yield results is to consider some silent brainstorming as well.

How this works is you gather a group of people together but before you open up the conversation ask everyone to write down their ideas or use sketches to visualize what they are trying to say.

Combining silent brainstorming with group discussion afterwards can ensure that you explore all potential avenues and it gives people the chance to freestyle and works different parts of their brain, which is what happens when you draw an idea instead of speaking about it.

If you follow these golden rules of brainstorming it should increase your chance of finding the solution for your business that you are all gathered together to find.

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