It's 2017 and project managers still freak out every time they have to calculate how long it will take the creative team to arrive at a solution for the client's brief. We have all been there. It's an endless fight. So, is it impossible to calculate how long the creative process should last?
Well, short answer; it's complicated. Long answer; you can take into consideration these two factors.
Better shorter than longer sessions
When it comes to the actual brainstorming sessions, it's better to plan a couple of short sessions than a long one. In that way, you can refresh your team's energy, make some pause and order ideas in your head. Each session could last from 1 to 3 hours.
Spend more time only when it's needed
If we had to make a formula, it would like something like this: t (time you spent brainstorming) = i (level of innovation desired) - p (pressure from a deadline, budget, resources, etc). That means, the more innovation and less pressure you have on a project, the more time you could spend ideating, and vice-versa. If no innovation/originality is needed, you should be more efficient and focused.
The time you'll spend ideating will always depend on the nature of the project. Next time you need to make some predictions, try to keep in mind the previous factors in mind.
Curious, excited, safe and playful are some of the critical moods you want participants to have. It will allow them to create freely and comfortable. The question is; can you change the way people feel?
We all have this adrenaline rush when it comes to starting a new project. You gather all the info, make a good debrief and then it's time to start generating ideas. And that's precisely the moment when you go "now what?".
Having effective brainstorming is not only about filling a room with post-its, but selecting bright ideas that will work. So how do you summarise ideas with a solid shape without too many details?
We've been all there. There is a specific type of disagreement that you just know it will go nowhere. It's an endless loop. Just back and forth with the same answer from both sides.