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David Alexander

Hi Andrew, you have some great ideas about brainstorming. I'm trying to come up with some ideas for a brainstorming session at work, but everyone seems to "groan" when I mention doing it. It's hard to get everyone involved in sharing new ideas. Some people who are not generally team players often find it hard to bring out their ideas, when sometimes they are the best ones!

Does your new company focus on these kinds of ideas or is it something different? Does it have an email address?

Thanks for your words, Dave

p.s Whens the next post? :)

Andrew Tan

>>Some people who are not generally team >>players often find it hard >to bring out >>their ideas, when sometimes they are the >>best ones!

I’m assuming what you mean by “not generally team players” is that they are introverts but are still team players because if they are really not team players …. errr … well let’s just say that it is a whole different topic.

The most important thing is comfort and openness. If people feel comfortable and if the culture is open people will be more incline to share their ideas. For introverts sometimes they need a little more encouragement to come out from their shell.

Now once a group reaches a certain level in terms of culture transformation the other thing that one might want to look at is how to utilize people to their max potential. What I mean by this is some people share their ideas better by illustrating them, some by writing them down and some by talking about them so one should consider ways to play to their strengths.

I do want to share with you an alternative to brainstorming and is called brainwriting: At the start of the session everyone will have a sheet of paper to write down or illustrate one idea. Once they are done with this they will toss that sheet into the middle and then pick up a sheet put in by someone else. The person reads the idea on the sheet and tries to build on it in some way. Whether the person can build on it directly, they write another idea and toss it back into the middle and continue. Whenever anyone picks up a sheet from the middle they read through prior ideas, trying to make connections and ignite sparks of new idea. Anyway experiment with this technique, combine it with brainstorming find out what works with your group and what doesn’t.

>>Does your new company focus on these kinds >>of ideas or is it something different?
Yes, it does ☺.


I know that last set of 7 dos from the Art of Innovation. I use it too!

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