A creative network of the idea, by the idea, for the idea

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Ingredients of a creative brainstorming.

"i think I've got it - Mandela, the After-shave"

I believe that the brainstorm session is the most important event in the life of a creative.

Most of what I know about the process of ideation I’ve learned at brainstorms. I really respect that moment when a thought is transformed from the intangible into an idea.

I like the humbling nature of a brainstorm too. There is nowhere to hide, in a creative brainstorm things are fairly simple; the best ideas raise to the top (This depends on the type of brainstorm and the people in it, but its generally true.) Ideas at this stage don’t know politics, which is another reason why I enjoy this stage of the process.

So after a creative life spent brainstorming, I figured that I could share with you what I have learned, from the inside.
  • Get the right people; Creative, knowledgeable, smart and willing.
  • Gather different people. Variety works wonders.
  • Who is leading? Someone needs to bring us back.
  • Why are we gathered here?
  • NEVER criticize (I don’t like…) NEVER judge (I don’t think it’s good…) I know you’ve heard this before but this is the single worst mistake people make. Criticism during the brainstorm session shuts down the soul of a creative.
  • Explore every idea, see where it leads, look for connections.
  • Pay attention to the flow of thinking.
  • Don’t be in a bubble.
  • Write down ideas on the wall.
  • Anything goes but please make it relevant. Don’t ask the group to do your homework. (there are exceptions to this, but not many)
  • Trust the group, don’t get stuck on one idea, move on.
  • Dip in. Get dirty. Help cleaning.
  • Learn from the guys who use little to create big.
For some reason there is more time spent in meetings than in brainstorms these days. We should reverse the equation and spend more time creating, even if it is for an aftershave.

1 comment:

  1. http://www.fastcompany.com/articles/2001/03/kelley.html