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How can it be worse? How reverse brainstorming inspires innovation

Source |  |  BY:Molly Moseley,LinkedIn Top Voice of 2016, SVP Marketing & Client Success

Mind maps, brain dumps, group discussions and SWOT analysis — there are a variety of brainstorming strategies companies use, but the goal is always the same: Find a solution to a problem.Traditional brainstorming embraces the idea that “no idea is a bad idea” in an effort to collect many different thoughts. Essentially quantity trumps quality. Those thoughts are then evaluated, often blended into hybrid ideas, and then the best ones are applied to the issue at hand. It’s a scientific approach that requires loads of creativity on the part of the participants.

The problem is the actual brainstorming process is bland and boring. You sit in a conference room (sometimes for over an hour) and make a list. If you’re lucky, you might get donuts out of the deal.

While companies often can’t change the setting for brainstorming sessions, they can change the process to try to stimulate different parts of the brain in order to get more creative solutions. This is exactly why reverse brainstorming is gaining popularity.

Basically, reverse brainstorming is teams getting together to chat about how to make a problem worse. It can be loads of fun because the answers can vary from the interesting to the insane. Plus, unlike traditional brainstorming, you’re likely to get a lot of laughs from your colleagues, which not only makes it an enjoyable process, but further inspires creativity.


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