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How Did You Think of That?

Have you ever stumbled upon an ad and wondered how on earth that team came up with such a great concept? These rules for brainstorming will help your team spark creativity and your best pitch yet.

1. Work Alone First

When a team sits down to brainstorm ideas together one person’s idea influences the thinking of the entire group. “Ideas tend to converge,” preventing the group from being as creative as possible (Markman, 2017). So, before your next brainstorm, ask your team to take some time on their own to jot down some thought starters and be ready to explain them in the group setting.

2. Brainstorm for Questions Not Answers

“Brainstorming for questions rather than answers makes it easier to push past cognitive biases and venture into uncharted territory,” (Gregerson, 2018). Asking questions allows people to think about the problem or task at hand differently and keeps people energized when the flow of ideas slows down.

3. Focus on Quantity, Not Quality

It is easy to get discouraged in a group brainstorm when you feel your teammates keep suggesting great ideas and your ideas don’t compare, but don’t worry! The most important thing to do when kicking off a brainstorm for a new concept is to focus on getting as many ideas out there as possible. Studies show that teams who were given quantity goals rather than quality goals “generated both more ideas and significantly higher quality ideas than those given a quality goal alone,” (Thompson, 2017).

Once you have your list of concepts your team can work as a unit to combine ideas and flesh out the best ones, allowing you to focus in on refining the strongest concepts and hopefully winning the prospective business!


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