Brainstorming | What to do and what NOT to do

Running a successful brainstorming session takes a lot of skill and practice. The key is to set the ground rules at the beginning and to reinforce them.

One of the most important rules is to expand upon the ideas of others. With this approach, at the end of a good brainstorming session, multiple people feel that they created or contributed to the best ideas to come out of the session. And, since everyone in the room had a chance to participate and witnessed the emergence and evolution of all the ideas, there is usually shared support for the ideas that go forward toward implementation. If you have participated in brainstorming sessions, you know that they don’t always work like that. It is hard to eliminate the natural tendency for each person to feel personal ownership for their ideas, and it can be tough to get participants to build on others’ suggestions.

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