Generating bright, new ideas takes creativity and sometimes a team brainstorming session. To some, being asked to be creative can be intimidating. You might begin to doubt yourself and wonder, “Does my idea stink?” Thinking this way can hinder your creative process. Keep in mind that even one small idea can lead to several more ideas until you reach the winner.

Brainstorming in a group heightens involvement, commitment, and enthusiasm while unlocking a floodgate of creativity. Collecting different viewpoints encourages critical thinking. These sessions help you become better at encountering a problem and thinking about it critically. This means looking at a topic or situation in a logical way, free from any personal bias.

Here are five tips to conduct a successful brainstorming session that will be beneficial to your team and makes everyone feel that their input is valued:

Make the goal very clear and come up with the first idea.

You can’t have a successful brainstorming session unless you communicate what the goal of the session. Before you call your team together, determine why you are there and the problem you are trying to solve. It is common for the beginning of brainstorming sessions to be a little quiet. Sometimes people are reluctant to volunteer the first idea. As the facilitator, you should initiate the session by sharing the first idea and inviting others to add their input.

Host your session in a friendly, comfortable setting.

It’s important for your team to know that all ideas, even bad ones, are welcome. There are no dumb concepts or questions. Brainstorming should be a safe zone where everyone’s thoughts matter. One idea, whether good or bad, can lead to a brilliant idea.

Encourage a moment of silence.

Do not be discouraged if your team is silent for a period of time. Silence doesn’t mean they have no ideas, it may mean their gears are turning. Sometimes it’s helpful to have a moment of silence to allow for creativity.

Recognize and reward input.

Facilitating a session that recognizes and rewards ideas will have a huge impact on brainstorming. Team members will feel encouraged to generate ideas. Adopting this strategy of open communication and feedback will eliminate any fear of criticism and spark the team’s creativity.

Write the ideas down.

Great ideas won’t do you much good if you can’t remember them. Assign a designated note-taker so ideas can be revisited and discussed later. This can be done on a laptop, a whiteboard, or a flip chart. Viewing everyone’s ideas on a board can help everyone think outside the box.

At Electrum Branding, our team works together to develop new and bright ideas for our clients. By using brainstorming sessions, we allow our creativity to flow. Click here to see the campaigns we’ve created.