In a video at Harvard Business Review, Dr. Tony McCaffrey explains why brainstorming isn’t efficient and why you should consider the alternative instead:
No study has proven that brainstorming works well, even though it has been the go-to method for idea generation since 1953.
But there is an alternative. After researching why brainstorming inhibits creativity and innovation, my colleagues and I came up with a new process we call Brainswarming….To start brainswarming, write the goal or problem you need to achieve or solve on a big piece of paper and have your team sit silently and write down different ways to tackle it with your company’s resources in mind. Once the right resources are found, you’ve come up with your solution.
Brainswarming challenges the concept of brainstorming by first addressing why any ideation discussion needs to happen in the first place. Then, according to McCaffrey, by breaking goals into subgoals and relying on individuals to raise resources to meet them, the idea magic happens somewhere in the middle. Watch the video below or on HBR.