The workplace is a space that takes up a major chunk of the professional individual’s time. The responsibilities associated with it can be demanding. The pressures of deadlines that must be met in time, delivering quality work, and teaming up with individuals with vastly varying ideologies are all part of the hectic package that is work. “ Making work fun “ might be a cliche, but the gist of it holds true. Finding ways to break the monotony of the daily grind while maintaining productivity is a good way to sustain a healthy work environment. So, how can this be achieved? There may not be a surefire answer to this but one of the effective methods companies have adopted to meet this goal is brainstorming.
This concept was first conceived by Madison Avenue advertising executive, Alex Osborn in his 1953 book “ Applied Imagination”, but since then “brainstorming” has undergone several changes. Primarily, brainstorming combines an informal approach to problem-solving with creative lateral thinking. This makes room for more ideas to reach the forefront, out of which some can be refined to give creative solutions while others could even lead to the birth of more ideas.
Besides gaining a host of new ideas for solutions, by giving such opportunities to employees, interaction is encouraged. This helps quiet and timid individuals come out of their shells. Furthermore, as criticism is withheld and unusual ideas are welcomed during a brainstorming session, individuals gain the confidence to speak out and let their views be heard. It creates a scenario where the employees don’t have anything to lose, which reinforces positivity and promotes a team ethic as everyone is given an equal weightage.
As spontaneous as the idea may sound, there is still a method that must be followed to yield the best results. The process begins by preparing the group and setting up a comfortable meeting environment. Once the members of the group are decided and the location is set, the problem must be presented in a clear and defined manner. The next phase is the idea sharing phase where the members of the group pitch their ideas and the person responsible for guiding the session, collects all the information. The evaluation of the collected ideas is done only when the guide has completed collecting all the information and decides to end the meeting. Inhibiting superiors from attending the meeting is also a good step to take as their presence might affect the openness with which the rest of the individuals share their thoughts.
Conventional group problem solving can often be undermined by unhelpful group behavior. Although following a structured and analytical approach to solving problems is important, this could lead to unimaginative and limited ideas. Brainstorming, on the other hand, provides an open environment. It encourages people to pool in their ideas and views without holding back. As there is no strict rule apart from the no criticism rule, employees freely interact and even enjoy themselves! This not only helps in bringing the team closer together but also improves productivity. So, in conclusion, open up, share ideas, mingle! You can have fun and keep your boss happy at the same time!
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