Brainstorming example

Advanced brainstorming techniques. There are many advanced brainstorming techniques beyond the basic three mentioned above. Two of the most popular of these advanced techniques are nominal group techniques and affinity diagrams.

Nominal group technique. Nominal group technique is a refinement of brainstorming. It provides a more structured discussion and decision-making technique. The nominal group techniques allow time for individual idea generation. This can be anytime. Sometimes, if the subject is not too complex, the team may only have 5 to 10 minutes. For a complex issue, the team may be asked to generate their ideas between team meetings. Once the ideas are generated, the nominal group technique then allows the leader to survey the opinions of the group about the ideas generated. Finally, nominal group technique leads the group to set priorities and focus on consensus. The nominal group technique steps can be summarized as follows:

1. Present the issue and give instructions.

2. Allow time for idea generation.

3. Gather ideas via round robin, one idea at a time. Write each idea on a flip chart or board and post.

4. Process or clarify ideas. Focus on clarification of meaning, not on arguing points. Eliminate duplicate ideas; combine similar ideas.

5. Set priorities.

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