Blue Sky Ideation

Summary: This assignment was a lot more of a challenge then I originally expected. Very much like the readings explained, the traditional brainstorming methods are not as effective as researchers once thought. There are numerous variables that can affect the success of a brainstorming session. The biggest problem i faced personally was scheduling conflicts. It is hard to get people to meet at one time without paying them or at least offering something for their time. There was also the problem of artistic ability. Traditional Brainstorming is highly dependent on drawing and sketching. Since none of the participants in my session had a background in design or anything artistic, they were hesitant to draw in the beginning.

Overall the session could have been better, but i still was grateful to the people who did show up. I also was able to at least get more ideas then what i could have thought of myself.

Individual Idea Generation:

“How might we make bedside/bedroom storage and organization easier for millennials”

New Warm-Up Game:

Raindrop / Drop-top / Guwop

The game i created is a innovation of zip-zap-zop. I substituted the words “zip”, “zap” and “zop” with catchy lyrics from the popular hip hop single “Bad & Boujee” by the Migos. I chose to use more trendy words because i plan on having all millennials in my brainstorming session and they hopefully will be more receptive to playing the game if they are familiar with the words.

To make the game more active i also integrated action with the words. Instead of the normal hand motion of zip zap zop i asked the players to do 3 different motions. One for each word of the game. And to continue the chain of play i also asked that they walk and trade spots with the person they want to speak next. I expected this to be confusing at first but that it would be easily adjusted to.

Session Organization:

I had an extremely difficult time getting people to actually attend the brainstorming sessions that i set up. The first session i organized was supposed to be held on Monday. I invited six people i would consider friends from different backgrounds. 4 males and 2 females. All agreed except 1 said he might have another arrangement. When the date and time arrived, none of my participants came. I do not know if they all forgot or if schedules just clashed last minute but this became a major dilemma in my timeline.

I attempted to schedule another session on Wednesday. I invited some of the people from he original as well as 3 new persons. On Wednesday only 2 of the people I invited came and one of my roommates volunteered to sit in.

The session was held at my apartment. In my living room. The room is not creatively decorated or painted but it does have a large glass door which lets in natural lighting into the space. The participants included 4 males between the ages of 20 and 22, which included myself. The 1st participant was a sophomore business student in the Carlson school. The 2nd participant was a 5th year computer science major in CLA. The 3rd participant was a 20 year old full time musician. I facilitated and acted as the 4th participant.

I started the session with the zip zap zop game. I wanted to give them some background of what we do in the class to prepare for creative thought. I also wanted to easily segway into the rules of my newly invented game. We played the game for approximately 5 rounds and everyone seemed engaged. Given the small group and the fact that everyone knew each other i opted out of doing more games.

I gave everyone extra large sticky note pads and sharpies. Some people had pink some had green. I then showed them some of the ideas that i had already prepared. I told them not to worry about how great their drawings are but make sure to keep the ideas flowing. I also collected a posted the ideas after they shared them to minimize wasted time. Drawing skill was a big deterrent for idea sharing over the course of the session. I observed each participant at least once crumple an idea. At one point one participant started to just list ideas then go back and sketch small pictures later. I switch the ideation prompt to negative to help revitalize the idea generation. They were confused at first but I quickly shared an idea to set an example. This started to produce more ideas. Most were silly or just basic things that already exist but do not work well. after 15 minutes we had a total of 46 ideas. For four people that would equal .76 ideas per minute per person. That was a lot less ideas then i was expecting originally but the lack of people was one of the major causes.

Sorting and Voting:

For the sorting portion, I first let them sort the ideas however they wanted. They all started instantly trying to name categories. After 5 minutes they had everything in 3 big general categories. I then told them to try and break them down into more specific groups without talking. The elimination of speech helped tremendously. Eventually we ended with 9 different categories.

  1. Safety
  2. Hanging
  3. Tacking
  4. Dresser Items
  5. Dresser top items
  6. Clothes Organization
  7. Electronic Organization
  8. Bed Modification
  9. Shelves

For the voting portion, i did not have sticker dots. I did the voting in rounds. For the first round i told them to put a “X” in the bottom left corner of 5 ideas they think were the most creative. For the second round i told them to put an “X” in the top right corner of the ideas they think would actually make a good product.

Top Ideas:

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