How Brainstorming Improves Creative Problem Solving
— January 26, 2017
Brainstorming sessions are frequent happenings at marketing and advertising agencies. Poor brainstorming can lead to weak ideas and wasted time. Practicing proper brainstorming techniques is crucial for marketing agencies to produce top-of-the-line content and ideas for clients, and that is exactly what we do at Brand & Mortar.
In general, brainstorming is a creative problem-solving technique that requires the spontaneous contribution of ideas from all members of the participating group. There are three key factors that help the brainstorming session head in the right direction, which include:
- A clearly defined question
- The right resource group
- Divergent and convergent thinking
How to Begin Brainstorming for New Ideas
When you’re ready to start brainstorming, start with divergent thinking! Divergent thinking is the broad search for many novel and useful ideas. For divergent thinking to succeed in a brainstorming session, it is important to defer judgement, go for quantity over quality, make connections, and seek novelty. Beginning the brainstorming session with divergent thinking is critical because it helps eliminate filters, judgements, and fears of creating wild and unusual ideas.
Tip: A good way to implement the flow of ideas is to have each participant write their ideas on separate sticky notes and stick them on a board for all to see.
What is Convergent Thinking?
Convergent thinking is the next step in the brainstorming session. It is the focused and affirmative evaluation of novel ideas. During this step, the ideas that were collected during the divergent thinking stage are critically evaluated. When choosing the strongest ideas, it’s important to:
- Verify that the idea aligns with the question
- Give each option a fair chance
- Take the time to improve the ideas at hand
Sometimes, brainstorming sessions require many levels of divergent and convergent thinking. After the initial question has generated great ideas, another defined question is posed relating to the ideas that were collected. Another round of divergent and convergent thinking takes place. This process is continued until the desired outcome is achieved.
Taking the time to run proper creative problem-solving sessions is a great way to generate ideas that are creative, unique, and well-defined, ensuring every project is a success!