Individual Idea Generation


How Might We Statement

The top problem that I found in my user research based on the topic of shower organization dealt with storage in shared shower spaces. The Problem Statement I came up to start to tackle this issue was:

“How might we separate and organize items in a shared shower space?”

I thought that this was a less constrained and more open prompt for tackling the subject.It served as a good jumping off point for my individual generation of ideas.

Individual Generation of Ideas

New Warm-Up Game


The new warm-up game I developed used key elements of improv we had learned in class such as using random thoughts and making something from seemingly unrelated ideas. I called my game “Collaborative Story-Making” (I didn’t want to use up any precious creativity in the name) and the rules were quite simple. Everyone at the table would right down the first three words that came to mind and then we would take those words and create a story together using them.

The results didn’t exactly make sense as our story was pretty much non-sense but it got some laughs around the table and definitely lighten the energy of the room.

I also taught the group the classic improv game of “Zip-Zap-Zop”. There was definitely a bit of a learning curve to this type of game but once we got a few rounds under our belt it had done the trick of loosening the mood.

Taking a picture of a group of improv new-comers playing a game resulted in quite the awkward photo.

Session Organization


The Set-Up

I chose to use the dining room in my house as the setting for the session. We already had a large (somewhat)circular table as well as a blank white wall perfect for putting ideas up. There is also a good amount of natural light that come through the windows that I thought would help to set the mood. I went to Target and grabbed sharpies, large post-it pads like the ones we used in class, and dot stickers to vote with. I also picked up snacks to keep people engaged and thinking including popcorn, lemonade, and Sweet and Sour Starbursts (TASTY).

I wrote down the prompt and laid out a schedule that included playing us my new improv game as well as Zip-Zap-Zop. I also put out some general guidelines for brainstorming that we outlined in class to make things easier on the group.

The Group

The four people I was able to convince to show up to my brainstorming sessions included three of my roommates and a helpful friend.

(From left to right) Heidi, Brendan, Hannah and Dan.

All four participants living situations have them sharing shower space with others, so the “How Might We Statement” applied quite nicely. I informed them of the prompt the day before, no one brought ideas to the table before we started but it was good to inform them prior so they would have an idea of what we were shooting for.

The Brainstorm

Prior to started I re-emphasized the prompt, again explaining my “How Might We Statement” concerning shared shower storage. I also introduced and shared my individually generated ideas with the group to get their thoughts and to help spark collective inspiration.

I explained the rules of deferring judgement and tried my best to emphasize that no idea was to silly. I later discovered that they would take this to heart, with such ideas as “Shower Couch” or the enigmatic “Magic Soap” concept.

The ball got rolling some what slowing but picked up steam as people started to see others place items on the board.

Despite the slow start, the group did a great job of sticking with it and trying their best to keep a good attitude.

Even though I didn’t use a system of tracking whose ideas were whose, it was clear that some group members excelled more than others in idea generation. Everyone did a great job putting an effort in, and by the end of the 20 mins we had posted a solid amount of ideas.

We generated 39 ideas, in 20 minutes, with five people, resulting in a IPM (PP) rating of 0.39

Sorting and Voting


After we finished the initial brainstorming session, I explained the silent sort technique to the group and we began to organize the various storage ideas into categories without discussing reasons out loud.

The group looked on during the waning moments of the “Silent Sort”.

Following the silent sort portion of the sorting phase we discussed what to name categories and made changes to the groupings that we saw fit.

Categories ranged from “Cabinets and Compartment Based” all the way to simply “Fantasy”.

At this point I introduced the voting portion of the process. I chose to use a dot sticker voting method similar to the one outlined in class. Green dots were used to indicate feasibility while pinkish/red ones inidicated creativity and novelty.

The group carried out the voting process using different colored dots to indicate feasibility and creativity.

When we were finished, the votes seem to reflect which ideas they thought were worth considering going forward.

The final idea board with votes cast.

Upon further inspection, I noticed that some of the votes may have been cast with a sense of irony. Ideas like “Shower Fish” and “Shower Couch” received both votes for creativity AND feasibility. Ideas that I had previously generated like “Selfie Shower Baskets” and “Individual Item Suction Cups” were received well according to the votes they garnered.

Top Ideas


Although I thought the brainstorm session went well, it did not yield many good ideas from my perspective. I only used one of the ideas from the session, as I noticed it received a good amount of both feasibility and creativity votes.

Note: All ideas below were generated by myself besides the idea for a “Decorative Tree Storage System” which was generated by my roommate Dan Petters.

The Final Ten

“The Shower Wheel”


“Selfie Storage Buckets”


“Decorative Tree Storage System”

Generated by Dan Petters

“Flower Shaped Storage Bins”


“Individual Item Suction Cups”


“Silly Animal Face Storage Buckets”


“High Hanging Towel Storage Box”


“Showerhead Hanging Octopus Storage”


“Shower-Shaped Storage Basket”


“Storage Box Surround Sound Speakers”

Self generated