Idea generation techniques are the best tools to solve problems, discover business opportunities, and expand your worldview. It’s necessary to break paradigms, transform processes and ways of doing things, and use our resources and creativity to develop new ideas or solutions.
This post will explain the seven best techniques for generating ideas and how you can apply them. With each method, you will learn how to have creative ideas and solve problems effectively.
- Delphi Method
The way this technique works to generate ideas is straightforward; here is the list of steps you must follow to apply it:
- The first thing to do is to create a form with questions on the topic of your choice.
- Then, you should consult the opinion of experts on the subject. For example, If your research topic is writing, it is good to ask a specialist from a paper writing service, a blogger, or a book writer.
- When you receive the forms, you should analyze them, summarize the most important information and formulate new questions.
- You need to repeat the process until you get a creative idea that fulfills what you need. So, the others’ points of view and experience can expand your vision of the subject you are working on.
- 4x4x4 Technique
If you are looking for tools for generating fun and easy ideas to implement in small workgroups, you should know the 4x4x4 technique. Here is the process of generating ideas with this technique:
- Each member of the creative team should write down a list of four ideas.
- Then pairs are formed, and people in that pairs should create four new ideas based on the ideas contributed by each team member.
- Finally, groups of four people are created, and four new ideas are written down.
All the techniques for generating ideas have some variants of use, and in the case of this particular technique, it is possible to generate ideas individually without any problem. The only thing to do is to write at least eight lists of four ideas, which will refine the options similarly to when applied to groups.
- Lotus Flower
This creative method was developed in Japan and has become one of the most popular strategies for generating ideas globally.
This technique was invented by Yasuo Matsumura and is a combination of brainstorming and mind mapping that helps to investigate the different aspects related to a topic.
Here are the steps to generate ideas with the lotus flower technique:
- Draw a 3×3 box on a sheet of paper or blackboard, and write the explored topic in the center.
- In the remaining eight squares, write related ideas.
- Eight new 3×3 boxes are created, in which the associated ideas should be written.
- Obtain eight additional concepts for each of the new ideas.
It is one of the techniques for generating ideas that offer the best results; at the end of the above-mentioned process, you will have generated 64 ideas of the topic you are interested in.
- Synectic Technique
For effective idea generation with this method, it is necessary to take any topic to a deeper level of abstraction. Because the more specific the approach to a topic, the more obvious are the ideas generated about it.
These are the steps to follow for the development of ideas with the Synectic technique:
- Define what the topic on which you want to generate ideas is.
- Make an abstraction of the topic and look for analogies or different writing methods.
- The group or individual applying the technique must choose one analogy and look for ideas derived from it.
- Once you have creative ideas about the topic of the analogy, you need to bring them into the context of the original issue.
If you are thinking of putting together your list of techniques for generating ideas, this is one of those that cannot be missed. Its results are excellent, it is effortless to apply, and it works in any context.
- Two-Word Technique
Unlike most of the techniques for generating ideas that we have discussed, you only have to spend a little time to start seeing results with the method of the two words.
To develop ideas with this method, you need a pencil, a sheet of paper and follow these steps:
- Create a sentence in which you summarize the topic in two words.
- You should make two columns on a sheet of paper, each headed by one of the two words you selected earlier.
- Under each word, you should begin to develop a list of related ideas.
- After making a list, you should create pairs by connecting the words in one column with the others.
If you are looking for techniques for generating ideas individually, this is one of the best options you have. Besides, what you need to apply is very easy to get.
- Brainstorming Technique with Random Order
Brainstorming with random words is beneficial and one of the best options to generate ideas and overcome creative limits.
It is one of the most unconventional idea generation techniques you can find. The idea behind it is to stimulate the ability to associate terms and concepts with creating. Here are the steps to follow to apply this technique:
- Define what topic you need to generate ideas about.
- Write random words on a piece of paper or a whiteboard. You can use a dictionary or an online word generator to get them.
- Think about each word’s links to the topic you want to develop new ideas about.
- Review your results and repeat the procedure if necessary.
Using storyboarding for idea generation is effortless. Just make sure you write down all the ideas you have on a topic on sticky notes and then linearly organize them.
The important thing is to find a logic that serves to place each idea and create a story that connects them all. This method effectively stimulates your creative capacity and will help you find ideas in the middle of the process.
By applying the techniques for generating ideas discussed, you will develop new ways and strategies to solve problems!