Toolbox - Brainstorming

Brainstorming - Facilitators' Edition

Point 1, Point 2, Point 3, Point 4


When to use this tool:

When a member of the group has a particularly challenging problem—one for which there is not an obvious answer.


Example of its use in a SMART meeting:

Ask for a problem the group, or take one from the agenda.

    • Does anyone have a problem or issue the group can help with? Who would like to help by writing the suggestions down?

Write down the problem (e.g., having to attend a wedding reception and friends who use will be there) and say: “We’ll go around the room asking everybody to share an idea, regardless of how wild it is. You may provide an idea or say, pass.”

Ask a volunteer to write down each idea. Continue around the room until there are no additional suggestions.

Once suggestions from the participants dry up, ask the volunteer to read through the list and say: If anyone wants suggestions clarified, just ask now.

With the help of the participants, ask the participant who submitted the issue:

    • Can we discuss these and prioritize these suggestions from 1-10, with one being the best?

Write down 1-10 next to each of the suggestions.

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