Business Analysis Techniques Series. During brainstorming, one or a group of stakeholders deliberate on an idea to produce numerous new ideas in a non-judgmental environment, and to derive themes for further analysis.
Steps for brainstorming
- Define area to brainstorm.
- Set a time limit. Allocate more time for larger groups.
- Identify facilitators and participants.
- Aim for 6 to 8 participants representing a range of backgrounds and experiences.
- Set expectations with participants and get their buy in into the process. Fundamental principle is No criticism of any idea.
- Establish criteria for evaluating and rating ideas.
- Share new ideas without discussion, criticism or evaluation.
- Visibly record all ideas.
- Encourage participants to be creative, share exaggerated ideas, and build on others’ ideas.
- Don’t limit the number of ideas.
- Combine ideas and eliminate duplicates.
- Evaluate ideas using defined evaluation criteria.
- Create and distribute condensed lists of ideas.
- Excellent way to foster creative thinking.
- Fun, engaging, and productive.
- Generate many ideas in a short time.
- Useful to reduce tension between participants.
- Depends on participants’ creativity and willingness to participate.
- Politics may limit participation.
- Participants must agree to avoid debating / criticizing ideas during brainstorming.
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Worked out Example:
Brainstorming session: Possible challenges in implementing the Governance, Risk and Compliance (GRC) management system.
Key stakeholders for the Governance, Risk and Compliance (GRC) management system were summoned for a brainstorming session to discuss the possible implementation challenges for the Governance, Risk and Compliance (GRC) management system.
The session was planned in advanced and the key stakeholders were intimated of the time and location. The facilitator introduced the team members and asked each participant to share their thoughts on the challenges in implementation.
All the thoughts were jotted down by the scribe and finally put into different categories. The final representation can be seen here: