Brainstorming often seems simple, but it isn’t, so as part of a new podcast series about creativity, Anne Miller, Director of the Creativity Partnership, and Ieva Martinaityte, Creativity Researcher at UEA, sat down to discuss the dos and don’ts of brainstorming.
There are four basic rules that should be followed to ensure brainstorming is as productive as possible:
- Build on previous ideas
- Encourage wild ideas
- Go for quantity
- No negativity
Using a simple game to start the session can help to encourage a creative atmosphere. It can result in some interesting, entertaining and far-fetched ideas, but crucially helps people find the right mind-set for a productive brainstorming session.
Inspiration can be helped along by any number of things, such as random images, but there should be something to start from, whatever it may be – innovation is impossible if all you start with is a blank page.
Time pressures can be an issue, don’t be tempted to force a solution within a short space of time – it’s unlikely to happen, but it can provide a good starting point for further discussion.
Get moving, due to the way the brain works, doing light activity can also stimulate ideas, instead of just sitting in a room talking. Brainstorming is a creative undertaking, so make sure you encourage creativity not just during brainstorming sessions but outside them too – you never know when inspiration might strike.
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Anne Miller, Creativity Partnership, and Eva Martinaityte, Creativity Researcher at UEA.