Brainstorming exercise - The chain

An exercise to build on top of ideas. 

Team members: 
From 1 to 6 (for bigger teams, divide them into several groups)

From 20 to 45 minutes

Get your idea to the next level with this idea development method


Circle your team around a deck of Triggers cards in the middle. Get a bunch of post-its and markers ready.

Before you start

Always read your focus problem out loud and make sure everyone understands it. Find guidelines about how to prepare a good briefing question here.


1. One person takes a random Trigger card and reads it out loud.

2. Decide on one idea you all like from this round and note it down on a post-it.

3. Take a new card to generate a variation of your previous idea. The team should ideate adding a feature or layer to the existing idea, building on top of it.

4. Place this new version of the idea on a post-it, next to the previous one, creating a chain of ideas (see picture above).

5. Repeat this process as many times as you want and see how the idea evolves into something entirely different from the start.


If at some point, your team wants to explore different options, you can create a new path from an idea, diversifying the results. Let each sub-team follow the new chain using their own Trigger cards.