3. The Silent Brainstorm
A big part of a successful brainstorm is including a diverse set of perspectives. One of the often-overlooked aspects of group dynamics is introversion and extroversion. To ensure that every voice is heard, we will often start with a silent brainstorm. In this setting, we’ll set up the brief, then everyone will go silent. For 10 minutes or so, each person will write up their ideas. Then, we’ll go around the room, one-by-one, discussing the ideas so everyone has a chance to share. This single tactic has been hugely beneficial at Day One.
4. Directional Thinking
This is also known as non-face-to-face brainstorming. There are a few ways to do this, but it’s ultimately about letting people come up with a single idea on their own time in their own setting. Sometimes, ideas will be swapped and shared in the middle of this process. For example, have participants submit their ideas via email throughout the day, so people can send good ideas on their own time and include links/notes of their own.
We’ve piloted a new style of brainstorming when we’re on a deadline, which we call the “Slackstorm.” We use Slack as our inter-office communications tool, and we recently started testing ways to connect various teams across coasts to tackle creative problems. The way it works is: set up a new Slack Channel specifically for the brainstorm, create a list of people to invite, and pin the brief at the top of the channel. Throughout the day ideas will roll in and spark other ideas. People pop in and out. Someone drops a link, which sparks half of an idea from someone else. It’s a very organic way of generating a lot of ideas quickly.