There will be many in the world of business that feel as though the internet and other technologies hold the key to their growth. The truth, however, may be that it comes from the personnel they employ and the more traditional methods that those individuals use to come up with ideas.
Whilst the evolution of technology does help when it comes to buying equipment and office furniture online, this is not the only change. Business language has also evolved, with terms such as brainstorm and mind showers becoming more frequent around the office.
The art of the mind shower is to promote creativity and collaboration. It acts as a platform for your business to draw on and develop the ideas of a group in order to complete a task and bring results to an individual project. By assembling your team of staff, and with little more than a display board and a marker pen, it is possible to collate many different ideas into one solution.
The main benefits of a brainstorm or mind shower are that it can dispel negative beliefs within a team that others are not creative. Everybody in the group gets to have their ideas logged and when all suggestions have been made, the opportunity to discuss them in further is available.
The ideas that are generated are done so by the individuals present and are therefore personal and are also formed by way of lateral thinking and association to the topic. This reduces the risk of irrelevant ideas and makes sure that all suggestions are produced in a democratic way whereby everybody can contribute.
Teaching this skill is vital for the problem solving and decision making processes that many businesses use on a daily basis. It is also highly transferable so it can be used in multiple areas of the business and by people with different skills and experiences.
When to use mind showers
As previously mentioned, a mind shower provides a creative output for a group and is more commonly used in businesses, but can also have a place in schools and universities. Some examples of when to utilise the benefits of a mind shower would be when thinking of a new name for a business or project, generating ideas for a new type of product or service or when trying to solve a problem or further a strategy.
Stages of a mind shower
There are three clear stages of a mind shower: planning, removal and implementation.
In the planning stage, a brief is given by the leader of the session and the main focus is placed in the middle of the board. The group is then invited to suggest or write their ideas around the key word, phrase or question. All suggestions are posted and it is essential that they are not overruled at this stage.
The removal stage of the process is a chance to filter out the ideas or topics that are either duplicate or do not fit well with the future of the project. This is a chance for members to question or disagree with other ideas or for those with ideas that may be considered ‘out there’ to pitch it in a way they see fit. This stage can also be used to form clusters ideas and group those which could potentially work alongside each other. This is particularly useful if implementing a large strategy.
The final stage is where the best ideas rise to the top and are finalised by the group. These ideas are then delegated to the individuals who are responsible to the relevant area of the business or project and are implemented thereafter.