“Brainstorming is a technique often used in connection with idea-getting which has produced some amazing results. The term and its application grew out of advertising man Alex Osborn’s attempts to improve the creativity of copywriters, and has been adopted wholesale by industry. Many firms report amazing success in the use of this stimulating technique, which uses the group approach to idea-getting…
Continental Can Company found some profitable savings through brainstorming the question of how to use the angle irons which came to guard corners of tin plate from the mill. Previously these had been scrapped, and sold for a fraction of their value. Through brainstorming, over 50 usable ideas for commercially producible items or money-saving uses came out of the scrap-iron piece.
Ultimately, ideas must be evaluated from the viewpoint of their value and practicality. This ordinarily falls to a few people who have the broad picture of the needs and procedures of the firm, and can fit new ideas into operations.”
George Odiorne, How Managers Make Things Happen, Prentice Hall, Englewood Cliffs, NJ, 1987, p. 134.
When we think of brainstorming, we can be taken back to our days at desks in school where we mapped out ideas for a Shakespeare play, identified problems with a scientific experiment, or creatively put together a plan for survival. As we get older, we often forget to brainstorm and can sometimes assume we should know it all at the very beginning. No! Brainstorming is all about collaboration and realising that our first thoughts aren’t always our best. You never know what ideas you have bubbling in your subconscious until you give yourself time to find them.
For all of you who are interested in developing Creative Problem Solving Skills including Brainstorming, check out our video outlining our short course on the topic.