Meaning of Brain-Storming
Brainstorming, as the name suggests, implies storming of the brain, i.e., to evolve or generate a number of ideas and the thought lines as quickly, as possible without paying consideration about their validity and appropriateness. As a strategy it was popularised by A.F. Osborn (1963) through his writing "Applied Imagination". According to him this strategy can be used with a group to explore a number of ideas related to a situation or solution of a problem without passing any judgement or censure.
Brain-storming is a large small group activity with encourages children to focus on a topic and contribute to the free flow of ideas. The teacher may begin by posing a question or a problem, or by introducing a topic. Students then express possible answers, relevant words and ideas. Contribution are accepted without criticism or judgement. Initially, some students may be reluctant to speak out in a group setting but brainstorming is an open sharing activity which encourages all children to participate. By expressing ideas and listening to what others say, students adjust their previous knowledge or understanding, accommodate new information and increase their levels of awareness.
1. According to Page and Thomas's, "Brain Storming is a technique of exploring possible solution where in participants are encouraged to contribute suggestions without risks of ridicules."
2. According to David's, "Brain Storming is an approach to increase the learner creativity and openness for problem solving.
Brain Storming Strategy consists of a problem solving situation in which students are assigned a problem and they are in asked to discuss any idea which come to their mind. The group is encouraged to provide even unusual suggestion. They have to analyse and evaluate the work ability of their own suggestions of the problem.
Steps involved in Brainstorming
- Gather the participants from as wide a range of disciplines with as broad a range of experience as possible. This brings many more creative ideas to the session.
- Write down a brief description of the problem- the leader should take control of the session, initially defining the problem to be solved with any criteria that must be met, and then keeping the session on course.
- Use the description to get everyone's mind clear of what the problem is and post it where it can be seen. This helps in keeping the group focused.
- Encourage an enthusiastic, uncritical attitude among brainsotrmers and encourage participation by all members of the team. Encourage them to have fun!
- Write down all the solutions that come to mind (even ribald ones). Do NOT interpret the idea, however you may rework the working for clarity's sake.
- Do not evaluate ideas until the session moves to the evaluation phase. Once the Brainstorming session has been completed, the results of the session can be analyzed and the best solutions can be explored either using further Brainstorming or more conventional solutions.
- Do not censor any solution, no matter how silly it sounds. The silly ones will often lead to creative ones- the idea is to open up as many possibilities as possible, and break down preconceptions about the limits of the problem.
- The leader should keep the Brainstorming on subject, and should try to steer it towards the development of some practical solutions.
- Once all the solutions have been written down, evaluate the list to determine the best action to correct the problem.
Purpose of Brain-Storming
- To focus students' attention on a particular topic.
- To generate a quantity of ideas.
- To teach acceptance and respect for individual differences.
- To encourage learners to take risks in sharing their ideas and opinions.
- To demonstrate to students that their knowledge and their language abilities are valued and accepted.
- To introduce the practice of idea collection prior to beginning tasks such as writing or solving problems.
- To provide an opportunity for students to share ideas and expand their existing knowledge by building on each other's contributions.
Principles of Brainstorming
While brainstorming has evolved over the years, Osborne's four underlying principles are a great set of guidelines when running your own sessions. These principles include:
1. Quantity over quality:- The idea is that quantity will eventually breed quality as ideas are refined, merged, and developed further.
2. Withhold criticism:- Team members should be free to introduce any and all ideas that come into their heads. Save feedback until after the idea collection phase so that "blocking" does not occur.
3. Welcome the crazy ideas:- Encouraging your team members to think outside of the box, an introduce pie in the sky ideas opens the door to new and innovative techniques that may be your ticket for success.
4. Combine, refine, and improve ideas:- Build on ideas, and draw connections between different suggestions to further the problem solving process.
Brainstorming techniques and processes helps your team innovate and work collaboratively, There's no single right way to hold a brainstorming session. In fact, holding individual or reverse brainstorming sessions can both be helpful activities for generating new ideas. Your goal should always be to use the process that works best for you and your team.
Why is Brainstorming important
If you've ever held a brainstorming session, you likely know that they can be very effective for generating new ideas, and finding solutions to a problem. This is largely due to the many advantages of brainstorming that help teams work more collaboratively towards a common goal. Some of the advantages of brainstorming for businesses and individual productivity include:
- Brainstorming allows people to think more freely, without fear of judgment.
- Brainstorming encourages open and ongoing collaboration to solve problems and generate innovative ideas.
- Brainstorming helps teams generate a large number of ideas quickly, which can be refined and merged to create the ideal solution.
- Brainstorming allows teams to reach conclusions by consensus, leading to a more well-rounded and better informed path forward.
- Brainstorming introduces different perspectives, and opens the door to out-of-the-box innovations.
- Brainstorming helps team members get ideas out of their heads and into the world, where they can be expanded upon, refined, and put into action.
- Brainstorming is great for team building. No one person has ownership over the results, enabling an absolute team effort.
In summary, the core advantages of brainstorming are its ability to unlock creativity by collaboration. It's the perfect technique to use for coming together as a team, and can help to generate exciting new ideas that can take your business to a new level. Now that we've established what brainstorming is, and why it's important, let's take a look at some examples of scenarios where it would be useful.
Significant Examples of when brainstorming would be useful
As you can probably guess, brainstorming is a technique that can be used in a wide variety of different situations. It can be in both your personal and professional life to help you find new ideas and solutions to different problems you're working on. Because of this versatility brainstorming is a widely used technique among companies and teams of all sizes.
To get you thinking about where you can use brainstorming, here are some examples of scenarios when this technique might be useful.
Your content and product marketing teams need to generate new messaging ideas for an upcoming product launch. You have a set of new features that you know will be exciting for your users, but you're struggling to find the right words to convey their importance and benefits.
Calling a brainstorming session to generate new messaging ideas would be a perfect way to start this writing process. As a team, you can throw as many ideas and slogans together as you can, and then refine them together to get a clear picture of the direction going forward.
You've been asked by your executive team to come up with a growth strategy for the coming fiscal year, which focuses on expanding your footprint into your most successful markets. You know that there is room for growth, but aren't sure which areas to focus on.
Gathering the key stakeholders in your departments and across the organization for a brainstorming session will help you quickly gather is list of growth opportunities. Each team member will have their own ideas for growth within their role which can be added to a longer list of strategic possibilities.
Your product development team has been repeatedly running into an issue with a new version of your software. Because on the complexity of the project, it's difficult to tell what the root cause of the problem might be Calling your product team together for a brainstorming session will help you gather opinions on what the issue might be. As more theories come forth, it's likely that a consensus will start to form about where the core issue lies. From there, you can brainstorm ways to fix the problem.
These are just three high level examples of brainstorming. This technique is incredibly versatile, and can be applied to virtually any problem or goal that your business needs to address. The advantages of brainstorming are many, and we highly recommend that you start in incorporate it more throughout your business operations.
Advantages of Brainstorming
Brainstorming is a creative process that can be undertaken individually but is mainly used in a group setting. It is used to work through ideas to find a solution to a problem or situation. It is a powerful way to generate, share and maximize new ideas. Brainstorming provides many advantages to the process of sorting through problems.
1. Encouraged Creative Thinking:- When you throw a group of people together, give them a problem to solve and say "let's throw some idea out there" to get the creative juices flowing. Ideas give birth to more ideas and people will bounce ideas off one another and the creativity will bubble over. When your thoughts are given free rein, it is much easier to come up with solutions. Beware though of letting the situation become too free rein as you can end up too far off course.
2. All Ideas are Accepted:- Ideas offered up in a Brainstorming session are never wrong; they are just an idea. It may never become anything more than an idea, but it is never wrong. Because of this, people can afford to put forth their ideas to the group without the fear of failure of ridicule. This can sometimes result in solutions coming from far out of left field because participants think "outside the box."
3. Makes Everyone Part of the Team:- Brainstorming in a group environment can enable all members of the group to feel like part of the team. It encourages widespread participation and involvement, It can make all participants feel like an important member of the group and that their ideas and input are respected and valued. When solutions to problems are found, it becomes a group achievement and everyone can ba ask in the feeling of accomplishment.
4. Exciting and Easy:- The concept of Brainstorming itself is not hard thing to comprehend. You simply start with a problem or situation, or even a single word, and then you simply map out any ideas that leap to mind as a solution. You do not need to be a genius or have a degree to become involved in a Brainstorming session. The very nature of the group structure can often make Brainstorming a fun and exciting process. The often speedy collation of ideas seem to race toward your common goal-the solution can make for an intense and exciting environment.
Demerits and Limitations
Brainstorming strategy may suffer from the following limitations and drawbacks:
- All the members of the group may not be interested equally in the solution of the problem.
- The group may not be homogeneous with respect to general mental level or knowledge and skill required for the solution of the problem.
- The group members may not come forward for putting up their ideas.
- The brainstorming session may not yield into convincing solutions. The members may clash with each other and indulge in verbal conflicts.
- The concluding session may not result into useful conclusion or solution of the problem.
- The members may waste their time and energy without getting opportunity for the realization of cognitive or affective objectives.
However, we must not get discouraged by the above cited limitations and drawbacks of the brainstorming strategy. These are very poor barriers and if proper care is to be taken by the teacher in making use of the brainstorming as a strategy, he may be able to achieve the desired purposes and advantages served by this strategy.
Post a Comment