Brainstorming is an important tool for developing new ideas for your business.  Brainstorming activities are also useful in solving problems faced by your business or your industry.

Here are three tips to help you get the most out of your brainstorming sessions.

  1. Schedule Brainstorming Time – Put this activity on your calendar so it is not forgotten or pushed aside by another project.  Schedule as much time as you can, but even a 10 minute brainstorming session can generate a long list of creative ideas.
  2. Record Everything – During your brainstorming activities, write down every idea that comes to mind.  Do not filter out any ideas and never trust yourself to remember the ideas at a later time.  Write them down immediately so you can refer back to the ideas in the future.
  3. No Criticism or Judging – When you are capturing creative ideas, do not criticize or judge any of the ideas.  You can evaluate your list of ideas at a later time.  During the brainstorming session, your goal is simply to come up with ideas and get them recorded.  Don’t worry about the cost or other obstacles involved with implementing an idea, just write it down.  If you are brainstorming with other people, do not criticize or judge any person’s  ideas – that can ruin a brainstorming session.

After your brainstorming session, keep writing down future ideas as they come to you.  For the next few days, be sure to keep a pencil and paper, recorder or other system close to you for recording additional thoughts.  These thoughts may be completely new ideas, a refinement of an earlier idea, or thoughts on how to implement a particular idea.  The same rules apply here: write down every idea without any criticism or judging.

Try scheduling a brainstorming activity every week and watch your list of creative ideas grow.