brainstormYou have decided it is time to get all or a subset of your employees together and brainstorm about an opportunity, challenge or threat your company is facing. Since there will be more than 50 people in attendance, it doesn't make sense to meet as one big group. You have heard about brainstorming, but are unsure how it works. Lets take you through, step-by-step ways to integrate problem-solving, team building and brainstorming into one meeting! 

Here are the 9 steps (or nifty nuggets) in order of execution: 

Nifty Nugget #1: Select only ONE business issue.  

Don't try and solve all the issues in the company or let the discussion digress into gossip. If the issue is, your organization needs more sales, focus on that and nothing else. 

Nifty Nugget #2: Form workable project teams. 4-8 people per team is ideal. It is best practices to put people who don't work for or with each other on each team. It avoids group think and the awkwardness of trying to do what the boss wants. 

Nifty Nugget #3: Review brainstorming procedures. Brainstorming is a group creativity technique to find a conclusion for a specific problem by gathering a list of ideas spontaneously contributed by its members. Someone in the group needs to be the scribe, without judgments or edits. 

Just for grins, here is a short YouTube video on "How NOT to run a brainstorming session". 

Nifty Nugget #4: Give the teams enough time to brainstorm and form effective strategies. Giving each team time to capture free flowing ideas and then work through them one-by-one is going to take a few hours depending on how complex the issue is. A good facilitator may need to adjust the time requirement by simply checking in with each team every 60-90 minutes. 

Nifty Nugget #5: Provide interactive technology tool rentals in each breakout room. Providing each team with laptops loaded with PowerPoint, iPads containing a mind mapping application, a printer,  flip chart and whiteboard is going to be integral to their success. They will need these tools to research strategies and prepare for the end-of-day presentation. 

Nifty Nugget #6: Develop the presentation. Having each team develop a PowerPoint presentation with limited slides to carry their strategy forward is going to be key in keeping them focused. You may wish to try Pecha Kucha (20 slides in 6 minutes and 20 seconds), or some variation of this theme to keep all presentations equal in time. 

Nifty Nugget #7: Practice the presentation. Having presentation services audio visual equipment available allows each team to rehearse their presentation in front of their own group and will help them pick out mistakes or identify areas that need clarification before the entire company sees it.  

Nifty Nugget #8: Gather everyone back together to see all the presentations. The AV technician can load all the presentations onto the PowerPoint presentation equipment while employees take a break. 

Nifty Nugget #9: Identify the best ideas and solutions for the problem and a strategy to make these things happen. 

AV Event Solutions is here to help with your next brainstorming session. They have iPads, laptops, LCD and screen rentals and much, much more! Give them a call today at 888.249.4903.