Brainstorming online is happening every day and continues to improve business after business. However, since virtual brainstorming is not the same as what goes down in the office, there can be some complications. Thus, let’s break down online brainstorming and the different ways you can prepare for a beneficial session.
What Is Online Brainstorming?
Online brainstorming is the procedure of conducting a brainstorming session virtually. This means that ideas and conversation are swapped through online means, such as video chat and file-sharing programs. Brainstorming online is a great way for remote teams to interact, share ideas, and build better communication strategies with a remote team. Here are some pros and cons of brainstorming online.
- It keeps you safe from viruses and any other outside bacteria lurking around the world.
- You can interact without putting yourself or others at risk of illness.
- It allows you and your co-workers to build stronger relationships and bonds.
- It can be hard to read one’s body language.
- Some people claim that they don’t feel like some people are really paying attention because it can be hard to create a strong connection through a camera.
Brainstorming in person is sometimes a difficult process, so conducting this same procedure online has its difficulties. However, it provides communication essentials for those who work from home. That’s why we are here to suggest different ways you can get the creative juices flowing for a better business future.
The Advantages of Facilitating a Brainstorming Session Online
If your team is remote, then brainstorming online may be the only way to conduct this process. However, if you have a team that regularly meets in person, facilitating a brainstorming session online has plenty of benefits.
First, brainstorming online means that, most likely, the majority of the team can attend. Often for in-person meetings, it can be difficult for everyone to attend. Some people take a day off or may be sick. However, meeting virtually can increase attendance.
Virtual brainstorming also gives team members easy access to online files, internet sources, and plenty of other creative programs. With the world at their fingertips, it can be easier to get more ideas flowing through the brainstorm session, resulting in better suggestions. It also contributes to boost team productivity.
How to Build a Good Virtual Brainstorming Session
There are so many ways to go about conducting a good brainstorming session. To break it down, we have divided them between two approaches—tangible assets and intangible assets. The tangible practice focuses on the physical ways you can improve your creativity. The intangible practice includes the more abstract ways of enhancing creativity among you and the rest of the team.
Tangible assets are physical objects. Therefore, the tangible assets approach to building a good brainstorming session is by setting up a workspace that promotes creativity. Switching out standard furniture for ergonomic furniture and maintaining organization are some tangible ways of setting up a space for brainstorming.
For a comfortable work area that promotes a creative atmosphere for virtual brainstorming, an ergonomic office desk is highly beneficial. In particular, the SmartDesk 2 keeps you comfortable throughout the day while boosting productivity. You can seamlessly transition from sitting to standing at the press of a button. When you feel productive, you can surely feel prepared for those online sessions.
We also encourage the use of an ergonomic office chair. These chairs support posture and keep you comfortable enough to feel energized during the workday. The ErgoChair 2 and the Kinn Chair are our top suggestions. Now, you can sit comfortably during online brainstorming sessions.
The intangible assets are what can make or break your virtual brainstorming. This is how you get the team to participate and put forth the best ideas. Below we have listed the best intangible assets as online brainstorm tips to include in your online brainstorming sessions.
1. Start by Addressing the Problem
There is no way to conduct effective online brainstorming without first clearly identifying the reason for the session. If you are a team leader, you should make sure that the problem is coherent and as straightforward as possible.
Additionally, you should brief all the team members on the topic beforehand. By giving them the time to prepare and think of ideas, you can surely get better and more thoughtful responses.
2. Transform Potential Ideas into Selected Ideas
While brainstorming online, it is easy to throw ideas out there but not to clearly select the ones that go into the final drawing board. To have a positive brainstorming atmosphere, it is always a good idea to record all ideas and then vote on those that deserve more in-depth consideration. Doing an anonymous vote can also keep the session more comfortable for the team.
3. Don’t Conduct the Entire Session on a Video Call
When planning the session, it is easy to do it all through a video call. However, our online brainstorm tip is to mix up the mediums. You may want to start out on a video call. With this, let everyone present their ideas and record them all. Once everyone has contributed, you can end the session and switch to a different platform where everyone can make comments on the ideas and vote on them.
Sticking to just video calls for a brainstorming session can make the meeting drag out longer than it needs to be. Mixing up the platforms can ensure that everyone stays focused and ready to contribute.
4. Use or Encourage Visual Elements
About 65 percent of the population are visual learners. Therefore, the chances are that most of your team members focus better with visual representations. As a result, you should encourage them to bring visual aids to present ideas, or you can use more eye-catching software throughout the session.
5. Avoid Putting Team Members on the Spot
This is where the brief comes in handy. Make sure that all team members are prepared to bring their ideas to the table. Give them plenty of time to think and get ready. If you put people on the spot, you are probably not going to get many good ideas.
6. Create an Agenda Beforehand
If you create a brief beforehand, attaching an agenda also makes things more efficient. The team can be better prepared for what is in store. Plus, it eases the tension of having to prepare ideas.
7. Create a Positive Atmosphere
In the end, one of the most important things you can do for virtual brainstorming is create a positive atmosphere. Encourage the team, put your trust in them, and work together to create a better business.
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