The Process of Brainstorming

Brainstorming usually takes place in a session, where participants gather together to stimulate and motivate each other to come up with many ideas. The session begins with a well-defined and stated problem. This enables everyone to be able to focus on ideas that are aimed at answering the question or solving the problem. In a brainstorm session, there is usually the team leader who directs the discussion. There are various phases of brainstorming. These are: 

● Preparation 

The sessions comprise of about 5 to 15 laymen and experts. The group is informed beforehand the problem or question to be discussed, date, time and duration of the brainstorming session. All the materials needed are prepared by the team leader prior to the session. 

● Generate Ideas 

All ideas that are generated are noted down on a flip chart or sticky notes or even recorded by the team leader. The team leader ensures every person participates and gives their ideas and creates a relaxed and creative atmosphere. This first phase of generating ideas is called the divergence phase because of the diverse ideas generated. The next phase is the convergence phase where the different ideas are grouped together into related subjects. 

● Evaluation 

After the brainstorming session is over, an evaluation of all ideas is done. This part can be done using the same participants or narrowing the group further down. Evaluate the usefulness of the ideas on each topic of discussion, analyze their pros and cons and compare the ideas to each other. Prioritizing takes place, and the hanging fruits or ideas that offer immediate possible solutions are given first priority. When you filter the best and most useful ideas, you begin to move from quantity to quality. 

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