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Individual brainstorming vs. Group brainstorming - Which is better for generating more creative ideas?

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Brainstorming is an effective tool to mine ideas out of our mind. It helps us explore various …

Brainstorming is an effective tool to mine ideas out of our mind. It helps us explore various
and, at times, instantaneous ideas to find creative solutions or business processes. There
are two brainstorming methods – individual and group.

Though both of them have their own advantages in terms of providing stimuli for idea
generation, people are more creative when they brainstorm on their own rather than in
groups. Individual brainstorming is better than group brainstorming as it provides the
working flexibility and gives a courageous environment to put all our ideas. What do you
say?

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  • 1. Individual vs. Group BrainstormingBrainstorming is an effective tool to mine ideas out of your mind. It helps you explore various and, attimes, instantaneous ideas to find creative solutions or business processes. There are two brainstormingmethods – individual and group.Though both of them have their own advantages in terms of providing stimuli for idea generation, peopleare more creative when they brainstorm on their own rather than in groups. This is because: • They can drive their own idea generation: In individual brainstorming, people enjoy the flexibility of working at their own pace. They can set their own time and place and work accordingly. People tend to be more creative at certain times and places. Some can be at their creative best in the morning, some in the evening, some while drinking coffee, some while traveling by bus and so on. This is absent in group brainstorming where people should follow set timelines and place. • They can avoid blocking ideas: If a group brainstorming session is poorly organized, it can quickly sidetrack the discussion. The participants, especially the reserved and the quiet, can get blocked off. They cannot be at their creative best and express their ideas in clamorous situations. Individuals do not suffer this constraint when they brainstorm on their own. • They don’t have to worry about other’s ego: People like to be noticed for the kind of contribution they make. At times, they go overboard and try to enforce their ideas on others. If ideas come from their superiors, chances are that the other members step back from expressing their own, just to avoid a conflict.In addition, in group thinking sessions, people may feel that their ideas are not as good or valuable asthose expressed by other members. Some ideas can be lost thus.It is common for people to be judgmental and quickly step into a discussion over one idea. Though it canbe controlled soon, it can affect the output. People are not likely to share their ideas if they feelintimidated. • They can produce more ideas: In group settings, you cannot expect equal participation from all members. Some people may feel shy to share their crazy or weird ideas. On the other hand, individual brainstorming allows participants to put down all their ideas without hesitation or fear of mockery. It’s possible that these ideas can pave the way for profitable business opportunities or provide you with more creative solutions.However, individual brainstorming misses the benefits of shared experience and expertise. No doubt,people can be more creative and generate more ideas when they work on their own. But you can knowthe applicability of these ideas only when you compare and contrast them with those of others. Thus, mixboth individual and group brainstorming techniques judiciously for optimal results.Do share your thoughts on the same.To read more such articles, visit http://blog.commlabindia.com/ No.30, II Floor, Sarvasukhi Colony, West Marredpally, Secunderabad – 500 026 INDIA Telephone: 0091–40–27803080 & Fax: 0091–40–27716308 URL: http://www.commlabindia.com Email: info@commlabindia.com