At The Millennium Alliance, we work together to collaborate ideas in order to expand our brand image that consists of two major components: knowledge and innovation.
It is important to channel these ideas in a productive and efficient way in order to achieve results.
One way to direct the ideas of an office toward one central goal is to brainstorm.
According to Business Dictionary, Brainstorming is a “process for generating creative ideas and solutions through intensive and freewheeling group discussion. Every participant is encouraged to think aloud and suggest as many ideas as possible, no matter seemingly how outlandish or bizarre. Analysis, discussion, or criticism of the aired ideas is allowed only when the brainstorming session is over and evaluation session begins”
Reflect back on the work environment you are in, are there techniques implemented in the structure that generates new, creative ideas?
If the answer is no, then, why not?
There are many benefits to brainstorming such as:
- Gets employees out of their comfort zones.
- Offers a new way of thinking for people who can get stuck in one thought process.
- Forms strong relationships in the office.
- Creates new ideas and strategies that get everyone on the same page.
- Communicates goals in a healthy, effective way.
Knowing where your co-workers come from and what their visions are for the company is an important factor to consider while conducting business strategies.
With all of this being said, there are a few suggested tips that you can follow while facilitating productive brainstorming sessions into the workplace.
In one of our recent brainstorming sessions at Millennium Alliance, we brainstormed to create new ideas for our upcoming event, FSI Transformation Assembly.
We followed a rule that did not allow laptops in the session, except for one device for the use of slide shows that presented our ideas.
Why did we do this?
It allowed us to remain open, to listen to everyone with no distractions.
Eliminating laptops in brainstorming sessions create a laid back environment that permits people to open up, share ideas without feeling pressure.
Ice breakers are one of the oldest tricks in the book and they have stuck around because turns out, they work!
When people are first getting situated in a new environment, they tend to feel uncomfortable especially around new people.
Icebreakers are an easy, quick way for everyone to get to know each other, share information, and loosen up.
Teamwork is one aspect of a work environment that is crucial for success and makes people feel good.
When people come together in teams in order to share ideas many positive things can happen such as support and guidance.
Teaching employees that working together is key to success, leads to building strong relationships and generates ideas.
Adding a reward in the mix can’t hurt either!
Lay Out Goals
Laying out the goals of the session early on is important because it gives people a chance to prepare and to show up with productive and effective ideas.
This can be done simply by stating the problems on a document to be printed out and passed around among the employees.
“Although you want people to be able to think outside the box, defining the goal makes sure that the group stays focused.” According to Selfgrowth.
Leading a group can be challenging, but displaying the goals of the session in a transparent way keeps everyone on the same page and toward the right track while prioritizing important tasks.
Visualization is Key
Brainstorming sessions should be conducted differently than office meetings, that often times have a set structure to them.
Instead, these sessions should offer more creative attributions that give people a chance to be put in a new environment, in order to generate new ideas.
One of these attributes involves visualization.
Visualization can be done through using whiteboards, sticky notes, or anything else that would fit your corporate culture.
Using these tools offers interaction among people in the session, allows everyone to have a role and provides a blank slate open to new ideas.
Put the Ideas to the Test
A brainstorming session is useless unless the ideas that are achieved are implemented into new strategies unique for each department.
Don’t be afraid to test out the ideas that have been developed in these sessions, or to bring them to higher management in order to create change.
Remember, not everyone will agree on everything, but it can’t hurt to try to develop new techniques in order to confront goals that will ultimately benefit the company and brand.
The results of our brainstorming session will be on show at our next event, FSI Transformation Assembly.
ABOUT FSI TRANSFORMATION ASSEMBLY
Join experts from North America’s major financial services and insurance organizations like Keynote Speaker Scott Dillon, EVP, CTO and Head of Technology Infrastructure Services at Wells Fargo and Company. Scott will be providing unique insight into how his team provides availability, security, and global interconnectivity for the more than 70 million customers who interact 12 billion times a year in person through the company’s 9,000 stores and 12,000 ATMs, on the phone, or online at www.wellsfargo.com.
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