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How to get your team to participate in brainstorming sessions actively?

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WeWork Staff

June 19, 2024

Brainstorming Session | WeWork

Learn about what can go wrong in team discussion and strategies to increase the participation of teams in brainstorming sessions or group discussions here at WeWork.

Brainstorming sessions are meant to be dynamic and collaborative group discussions where ideas can flow freely. However, these sessions often do not end up being fruitful because of inactive participation from team members.

So, today, we will delve into why brainstorming sessions sometimes go wrong and explore effective ways to ensure active participation from every team member during these group discussions.

Why do brainstorming sessions go wrong?

Brainstorming sessions can fail due to the following reasons:

  • Lack of structure

Without clear guidelines and objectives for the group discussion, team members can tend to feel directionless and hence, may not be motivated to contribute to the brainstorming session.

  • Fear of judgment

Some team members may hold back from giving their insights due to the fear of criticism or rejection.

  • Poor communication skills

Certain team members may not have the right communication skills for group discussions, which can be an obstacle during such sessions.

Also Read: What will it take to end bias in the office?

Ways to get your team to actively participate in brainstorming sessions

To ensure active participation in brainstorming sessions, consider using the following strategies:

1. Establish clear objectives

Start the brainstorming session by outlining the goals and expectations. Clearly explain the problem at hand to give your team the context and direction for the brainstorming session.

2. Encourage equal participation

Ask for input from all team members and ensure that each member has an opportunity to contribute to the discussion. Consider assigning roles to each member like a facilitator, a timekeeper, a note-taker, etc. This ensures that the group discussion communication is smooth, and each member is engaged.

3. Create a safe environment

Encourage the team members to share their ideas and opinions freely during the brainstorming sessions without the fear of judgment or criticism. Emphasise that their contributions are valuable.

4. Promote active listening

Instil group discussion skills like active listening in your team. Encourage all the members to build upon each other's ideas instead of dismissing them.

5. Use technology

You can make use of online discussion groups to ensure participation from more team members, especially when they are placed at different locations. Digital whiteboards or brainstorming apps can come in handy in such cases.

6. Utilise Flexible Working spaces

In today’s remote work environment, you can also consider conducting brainstorming sessions in a Flexible Working space like WeWork. Our well-equipped spaces offer amenities like meeting rooms and collaborative workspaces that not only provide a change of scenery to your team but also give access to facilities that can inspire creativity and promote focused teamwork.

Also Read: Know all about the benefits of flexible working space

In conclusion

Effective brainstorming sessions and group discussions are necessary for solving problems and challenges within organisations. By implementing these strategies to promote active participation, you can use your team’s collective creativity and unlock new growth opportunities.

Brainstorming session
Brainstorming meeting