Virtual brainstorming is currently a need for many firms to keep things going smoothly. Hence, companies are resorting to virtual brainstorming due to the epidemic, and they are also taking advantage of it by hiring remote workers since this is a wonderful method to add specialized abilities to their team, hiring experts from around the world.
Companies are hiring employees that they would not normally have access to if they worked remotely. Therefore, brainstorming is the best way to aid them in utilizing their talent without any discrepancies. Keep in mind, great ideas are certain to emerge when people are brought together and encouraged to be creative.
However, the problem is that teams often find more difficulty brainstorming in virtual meetings than in in-person. Are you facing the same challenge? If yes, then you are at the right place. Know that you can make your meeting a success with the right approach to the situation and some remote work trends.
For your ease, we have listed below some strategies that would be guaranteed to help you in making your virtual brainstorming succession engaging and productive. Let us look into them:
1. Prepare yourself beforehand:
It makes a huge difference to arrive at the meeting prepared, whether it’s something virtual or in-person. It would be best if you spoke with all contributors ahead of time to plan and prepare for a positive, creative process. Ascertain that everyone is informed of the result or goal of the brainstorming session that is to be achieved by the end of it. Moreover, information about the other participants, who they are, and what their roles would be.
Remember, the meetings that are poorly planned don’t execute well, preventing you from getting the best outcome. Hence, it just wastes the valuable time of yours and the other participants and the handwork behind it. In fact, you are not helping them; instead, you are just setting all the participants up for failure as soon as you begin with a meeting that has no instructions or details. As a result, participants are unaware of what they are supposed to contribute, how, and the end goal.
Hence, it is essential for you to let them know about the details before; only then can you conduct a successful meeting. By doing so, everyone will have time to plan effectively, conduct research if necessary, and reach the best mental condition possible on brainstorming day.
2. Begin with an ice breaker:
Ice breakers are said to be a great way to get people’s creative side out. Therefore you must consider starting your session with it. However, when deciding which ice breaker you would use, keep in mind that every person has different levels of comfort, so try not to offend anyone. Fortunately, there are plenty of virtual icebreaker ideas circulating on the internet these days. Among which some are as follows that you can consider for your brainstorming session:
- Truth or lie: you ask each participant to reveal two facts and one falsehood about themselves. The remainder of the team must figure out what the deception is. This ice breaker would be highly effective if you’re having a session with newbies.
- Would You Rather: This is the best and fun way to learn more about your coworkers. Ask them weird questions like which would you prefer: the capacity to teleport or that you can fly? Such questions, having them to choose between two things.
- The Hot Seat: in this one person would be placed in the hot seat. Then each person would ask them questions one by one. However, make sure you create some ground rules and ask questions that are not too personal or intrusive so that you don’t offend anyone.
3. Keep it brief:
Try to keep the session brief. It must not exceed an hour, regardless of the length of your topic. Because exaggerating will only make the individuals become distracted, bored, or drop off to attend to priorities.
Hence, prioritize and reconsider what needs to be discussed and what can be excluded or what can be delegated to asynchronous platforms. However, in case the topic is absolutely critical to discuss as a group and can not be covered in the span of an hour, then instead of extending the duration of the meeting, you must consider holding numerous brainstorming sessions to complete the course.
4. Use modern technology to gather data:
Interactive web tools are vital in terms of the modern workplace for assisting with communication, organizing, and innovation. Fortunately, there are a lot of excellent tools available to assist remote teams in business dealing; whether it’s collaborating or brainstorming, they can make it happen more effectively and efficiently. For instance, now you can easily get access to visually appealing presentation templates on the internet. Utilizing them, you can present the complex data in an understandable way to your work team.
It is not necessary to employ expensive equipment for brainstorming sessions; just select the one which fulfills your need. For example, one brainstorming digital tool is google sheet. Through it, you can function well-having participants post ideas, go for voting on the ideas, group ideas, etc. However, the most crucial aspect of this is that you can share your file or the screen with others and can also give access to everyone for editing at the same time to add their suggestions.
Prepare your document ahead of time by designating each participant a dedicated location to scribble down their comments, whether it is a row or column in Excel or the slide from the Google Slides. The aim is to keep everyone’s cursors from interfering with each other.
5. Select your virtual brainstorming approaches and games:
One method to make your brainstorming enjoyable is to have everyone participate in the brainstorming games. Following are the games that you should consider in your meeting:
- Word Association: word association is a fantastic technique to stimulate ideas in your brainstorming session. It begins like someone says a word, and that is followed by the rest of the people one by one by saying whatever the first thing comes into their mind. This may be quite helpful when you are trying to get some ideas flowing as a team. Customize it for a professional setting, like if you are in marketing and want to come up with new campaign ideas instead for the “Instagram”. You can start with a certain influencer’s name or go with something completely random in the target market like trends and pass it on. You will end up getting something new.
- Reverse Brainstorming: this method can help you remove the barrier that is blocking new suggestions and ideas from coming up to you and within your team. This works like, for instance, If you are launching a product, then think about three bad options: difficult homepage to browse, forgetting to mention the debut, or talking adversely about the launch online. By doing so, you can go backward and find what the things that you must be doing are.
Summing up with the hope that the above discussion might have cleared your thoughts on how to leverage the brainstorming sessions, particularly for the remote teams. We assure you will notice a huge difference in the efficiency of your brainstorming session after using these suggestions.