When faced with a difficult situation there are several decision-making tools or techniques that one can employ, brainstorming is one of them. Brainstorming is a powerful technique that breaks through narrow thinking by tapping into ones creativity, calling on every viable, however random, solution imaginable. This helps generate radical ideas and can lead to remarkable results. In order to find the best solution it is important to consider many possible solutions.
Brainstorming involves quickly recording a broad list of ideas, which can then be expanded and evaluated. During a brainstorming session ideas should be generated as quickly as possible in order to develop the most creative and varied list of alternatives. As most problems are not easily solved by the first idea that comes to mind, brainstorming is an excellent way of developing many creative solutions to a single problem. Brainstorming works well individually or within a group but is increasingly more effective when a greater amount of people are involved.
This line of reasoning follows the idea that two heads are better than one. A couple of ground rules must be considered when brainstorming:
Define the problem or idea to be explored and make sure everyone is clear
Let the leader have control
Allow everyone to contribute and be heard
Ensure that no one will insult, demean, or evaluate another participant or his/her response
State that no answer is wrong
Record each answer unless it is a repeat
Set a time limit and stop when time is up
By following these guidelines, one can ensure a productive and efficient formal brainstorming session. However, brainstorming can also occur through casual conversation, and in less formal settings. For example, in my work place, several colleagues and I decided to plan a surprise birthday party for one of our coworkers. As soon...