Organizational Development Consultant

Six Techniques to Brainstorm Ideas: #2 Mind Mapping

April 28, 2014

 “Sometimes we brainstorm information and ideas that need to be subsequently placed into a specific sequence, order, or outline. But our group likes to brainstorm in a nonsequential manner, much like the process outlined in the Old Fashioned Way. Is there an efficient way to brainstorm that will allow us to later sequence the information without extra work?”

#2 Mind Mapping

What Is Mind Mapping?

Mind Mapping is a brainstorming technique for quickly charting your group’s ideas in logical groupings, even when members give ideas in a nonsequential manner.

It is impossible to effectively outline ideas in a traditional, Continue reading

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Six Techniques to Brainstorm Ideas: #1 The Old Fashioned Way

April 24, 2014

Contemporary organizations expect every group within them to provide creative solutions. Groups need to find better ways of doing business as well as expose, analyze, and deal with problems before they even occur.

The best way to find the most effective idea is to first introduce as many ideas as possible. And that means brainstorming. Brainstorming works on the principle that the quantity of ideas increases their quality. The first ideas are typically the most obvious. When brainstormers are fearful of scrutiny and judgment during the brainstorming session, ideas stop flowing before the best ideas come forward. Deferring judgment on Continue reading

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Seven Techniques to Boost Creativity and Teamwork: #7 The Funeral

April 19, 2014

“Our group has just gone through downsizing and restructuring, and we’re having a difficult time letting go of the past. This negatively impacts our ability to concentrate on future demands. What can I do to help the group deal with this type of situation?”

7. The Funeral

What Is the Funeral?

The Funeral is a technique for helping a group put the past aside and prepare for the future. The Funeral acknowledges in a good-natured way that the past had both its good and bad points. However, in order to go forward, the group must now bury the past and Continue reading

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Seven Techniques to Boost Creativity and Teamwork: #6 Milestones

April 17, 2014

“I’m want a technique for helping our group understand and appreciate the diversity of experience and backgrounds in the room, but in an informal and interesting way.  Do you have any ideas?”



MILESTONES is a technique that allows for participants to learn more about the members of their meeting group, thereby building a stronger sense of team.  By focusing on MILESTONES in each participant’s life, the exercise promotes learning more about each other, both on a personal and professional level, which ultimately helps people work together more effectively.

It is often an underlying Continue reading

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Seven Techniques to Boost Creativity and Teamwork: #5 Two Truths and a Lie

April 14, 2014

“Even though we’ve worked together for a while, no one seems to know very much about the other people in the group. Is there a fun and simple technique that will help us learn more about our fellow participants?”

5. Two Truths and a Lie

What Is Two Truths and a Lie?

Two Truths and a Lie is a team-building exercise that provides your meeting participants with personal information that reveals more about the other team members as individuals. By having fun and revealing pieces of trivia about themselves, people expose parts of their background and interests that other group Continue reading

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Seven Techniques to Boost Creativity and Teamwork: #4 Team Learning

April 7, 2014

“Our group is limited to our own old habits, opinions and experiences.  But the challenges facing us call for a fuller understanding and broader perspective.  We joke that we all need to go back to college to get some new ideas, but, of course, there’s no time for that now.  Do you have any suggestions?”



TEAM LEARNING is a technique that provides a work team or meeting group with the resources to learn new information.  Teams often become so busy accomplishing tasks and making decisions that they don’t Continue reading

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Seven Techniques to Boost Creativity and Teamwork: #3 Incrediballs

April 4, 2014

“More than ever before, our group needs to start making some radical improvements in the way we do our business.  We haven’t worked particularly well together in the past and I need to get these people together and jolted fast.  Do you have any suggestions?”



INCREDIBALLS is a technique that motivates people to work together as a team and challenges them to think about ways to work together differently and more efficiently.  The INCREDIBALLS exercise presents participants with increasingly difficult and seemingly impossible deadlines, which stimulates creative thinking and solutions.  Continue reading

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Seven Techniques to Boost Creativity and Teamwork: #2 New Glasses

March 25, 2014

“Some of my group’s participants seem resistant to change and insist on looking at problems in the same old ways. Is there a simple technique that can help them snap out of their old habits and perceptions?”

2. New Glasses

What Is New Glasses?

New Glasses is a simple technique to help your meeting participants look at the meeting agenda’s topics through new eyes and to support them in leaving their biases and old perspectives behind. It is an instantaneous energizer and also serves as a good technique for the tactile learner.

New Glasses involves literally asking each participant to Continue reading

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Seven Techniques to Boost Creativity and Teamwork: #1 Thinking Outside the Box

March 22, 2014

My last twenty blogs described techniques for improving meeting productivity.  The next seven blogs will describe meeting facilitation techniques to boost creativity and teamwork.  They will include:

1. Thinking Outside the Box

2. New Glasses

3. Incrediballs

4. Team Learning

5. Two Truths and a Lie

6. Milestones

7. The Funeral

Today, we’ll start with Technique #1: Thinking Outside the Box.   Here we go!

What Is Thinking Outside the Box?

Thinking Outside the Box is a technique designed to help your participants see the value of thinking in new and different ways.

People think and problem solve Continue reading

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20 Techniques to Improve Meeting Productivity: #20 Small Groups

March 14, 2014

“Sometimes it seems impossible to hear from everyone in our meetings. The group is too large, the agenda is too long, or the time is too short. How can I be sure that everyone gets a chance to speak his or her mind?”

20. Small Groups

What Is Small Groups?

Small Groups is a productivity technique for gaining input from everyone in the meeting. This process involves breaking a large group into smaller, more manageable groups of participants.

Small Groups stimulate fuller participation, require less time, and tend to create higher energy and better results. They can be combined with Continue reading

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