Recently I gave a presentation on Creative Slip-Ups: The 11 Most Common Mistakes in Brainstorming to the Worldcom Public Relations Group, the world’s largest partnership of P.R. firms with more than 100 firms around the globe. This is the summary page of my talking notes, with links below to each of the 11 subsequent posts.
I called them “creative slip-ups” because I see these minor mistakes – usually caused by an honest error in judgment, ignorance or inattention – which in turn, affect the quality and effectiveness of brainstorming.
I’m guilty of every slip-up posted here, but over time, I learned to fix each issue through trial-and-error, picking up tips from other creative directors in my network, and hearing tips and hints from readers of my blog.
Here are my top 11 slip-ups with suggestions to adjust the brainstorm process accordingly.
#1. Brainstorms often start with the same objective.
#2. People come to the brainstorm in the wrong mindset.
#3. Using shallow research to make strategic decisions.
#4. Thinking the target audience is simply a statistic.
#5. More time is spent on strategy than creativity.
#6. People brainstorm without any tools, games or props.
#7. Forcing people to brainstorm in the same way.
#8. We too often listen to our negative inner voice.
Also, some additional points on the 10 qualities of a good brainstorm facilitator.
#9. People get too close to their clients, their issues, and worst of all, their politics.
Also, a follow-up post: Is Knowledge Helpful or Hurtful?
#10. People avoid risky ideas.
#11. The ideas are often separated from the creative process.
Obviously, these are my opinions, but I’d love to hear about any common errors made that affects the quality of brainstorming and creativity internally in your organization or involving the client.
What else would you recommend or suggest?
Please feel free to comment if you have any ideas to add, either below on this introduction page, or any of the following posts. Enjoy!