How to Brainstorm

This mind map explains brainstorming with multiple techniques. It shows how to hold brainstorming sessions and which software might be helpful.

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How to Brainstorm by Mind Map: How to Brainstorm

1. Brainstorming Techniques

1.1. Mind Mapping

1.1.1. Technique was developed by Tony Buzan in the 1960

1.1.2. Step 1 The central topic or question is written in the center of the canvas Canvas can be a white board, a white piece of paper or a digital map canvas

1.1.3. Step 2 Participants draw branches from the center and write one idea on each branch Tip

1.1.4. Step 3 Participants draw smaller branches from existing branches and write associated ideas onto them Tip

1.1.5. Step 4 If participants are using a digital tool like MindMeister, ideas can then be moved around, grouped, restructured, highlighted and voted on

1.2. Brainwriting

1.2.1. 6-3-5 Brainwriting 6 people write 3 ideas in 5 minutes Technique was developed by developed by Bernd Rohrbach in the 1960 Step 1 Every participant gets a blank worksheet & writes the problem statement down at the top of the sheet Step 2 Each participant has 5 minutes to come up with 3 ideas Ideas are written into the first row Step 3 Worksheets are passed on to the person on the right Each participant again has 5 minutes to come up with 3 more ideas and write them into the worksheet This process is repeated until all rows are full Step 4 When the brainwriting session is finished, you have 108 ideas, ready for assessment

1.2.2. Brainwriting Pool Step 1 Each participant gets 5-10 post-it notes Step 2 Participants write ideas onto the post-its and place them in the center of the table Step 3 Participants grab post-it notes from the center and use these ideas as inspiration Participants generate more ideas, build on existing ideas and refine ideas

1.3. Frame-Storming

1.3.1. Technique created at Stanford Term was coined by coined by Professor Tina Seelig and popularized by Matthew May Focuses on questions rather than answers Questions provide the frame for their possible answers. By changing the frame, you change the range of possible solutions. Similar techniques QFT (Question Formulation Technique) Question-storming

1.3.2. Step 1 Design a question focus Use a short, provocative statement rather than a question!

1.3.3. Step 2 Generate questions Form groups and encourage participants to come up with as many questions as possible, while one person writes them down

1.3.4. Step 3 Prioritize questions Each group selects their favorite 3 questions to share with the room

1.3.5. Step 4 Research, ponder and discuss the questions, then form an action plan

1.3.6. See also How Brainstorming Questions, Not Ideas, Sparks Creativity

2. MindMeister

2.1. Simple, fast online mind mapping

2.2. Supports collaborative brainstorming

2.2.1. Unlimited number of participants

2.2.2. Participants see changes in real-time

2.3. Runs in the browser and on iOS & Android

2.3.1. Completely web-based

2.3.2. Offline mode for mobile apps

3. The Brainstorming Session

3.1. Principles of a Brainstorming Session

3.1.1. Go for quantity: come up with as many ideas as possible

3.1.2. Don’t criticize & don't judge ideas

3.1.3. Welcome unusual ideas

3.1.4. Combine, refine, improve - build on each other’s ideas

3.2. Goals of a Brainstorming Session

3.2.1. Generate creative ideas

3.2.2. Make a decision

3.2.3. Find a solution for a problem

3.2.4. Examples In Business Come up with new product ideas Find a name for your company Find ways to increase revenue In Education Generate ideas for creative writing assignments Find innovative ideas to solve scientific problems

3.3. Questions to Ask During a Brainstorming Session

3.3.1. Good questions Begin with "How", "Why", "If" Are specific Don't limit the imagination

3.3.2. Example: Innovating your company If you were CEO for one day, what three things would you change in order to...? If you could only work on one single project for a whole year, what would it be? What can we offer for free that no one else does?

3.4. See also:

3.4.1. Build a Better Brainstorm: A Guide to Inclusive Team Meetings

4. Brainstorming Software

4.1. Other Tools

4.1.1. RealtimeBoard

4.1.2. Mural

4.1.3. Coggle

5. Brainstorming Definition

5.1. Brainstorming is a process for generating creative ideas and solutions through intensive and freewheeling group discussion.

5.2. Term was popularized by advertising executive Alex Faickney Osborn

5.2.1. 1953 Book: "Applied Imagination"

5.2.2. Osborn predicted that the creative output of groups would be 50% higher than that of individuals

5.2.3. However, there are some issues with in-person brainstorming sessions which counteract this prediction

5.3. Benefits of Online vs Offline Brainstorming