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Aug 5
2019
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Corporate Brainstorming Tips

Brainstorming in a corporate setting can be a great way to build a team, include individuals from a variety of departments and be a catalyst for creative expression. Like any corporate event a successful brainstorming meeting requires vision and planning.

Before

A corporate event, large or small, has a theme or goal, so begin your brainstorming event strategy by, well, brainstorming! Are you needing ideas to solve a problem, launch a new product or recruit new talent? Who is best able to help you come up with innovative ideas to reach your goal? Set a timeline, agenda and choose a venue. Despite the fact this may be a small corporate function the venue is still important. The setting needs to be comfortable and free from distractions.

When you are deciding on who to invite be sure to include those that are considered enterprising and imaginative regardless of their department. Sometimes those a bit outside of a problem or environment are freer to think artistically. Try to avoid anyone who is known to be negative or critical. You want participants to feel free to express their ideas without fear of criticism.

Timing is everything. Schedule your corporate brainstorming session in the morning when everyone is fresh. Offer healthy snacks to keep their energy up. Schedule breaks. Knowing you will not be forced to sit all day with your stomach rumbling is a great incentive to show up with your best ideas. Reduce any before meeting tension by letting everyone know their ideas are welcome and that you are looking forward to a meaningful meeting.

During

If the day’s leader or facilitator is from outside your organization they will probably describe their past experience and explain the expectations for the day’s events. If there is a white board or flip chart to be used to list everyone’s ideas now is the time to choose a note taker.

Even though you have someone writing the ideas on a white board or flip chart consider having a video recording of the event for future reference. Speaking of the future, do not just think forward. Discuss with the group past successful initiatives or campaigns to see if bits and pieces could be resurrected or reworked.

Sometimes a group will have a difficult patch where additional ideas stop flowing. This quiet moment may be a good time for a break or to reiterate that there are no bad ideas in brainstorming and universal participation is welcome. If there is one person monopolizing the conversation switch the seating arrangement to change the dynamic in the room or begin a round robin discussion where everyone speaks.

After

Whether you decide to rank and select the best ideas yourself or with your managers the next step is to mark the top proposals. Obviously execution of any idea requires follow through, time and funding, but be sure to let those that attended the corporate brainstorming session know a tentative timeline and resolution date.

Corporate brainstorming can be a great way to get fresh ideas from some of the most creative individuals in an organization. With a little planning and a willingness to be open to innovative thinking a corporate concern or goal can be addressed and executed with everyone feeling encouraged and appreciated.

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