Brainstorming: An Essential Component of Business Management

“If it ain’t broke don’t fix it”…

“We do it that way, because that’s the way we’ve always done it”

These are not the sentiments expressed by successful businesses. These statements were probably the expressions of companies that have gone by the wayside. Companies like Kodak, The Sydney Harbour Ferry Company (look it up) and Taxi Companies – all probably thought that way.

Things are changing quickly and “Disruptors” and “Category Killers” are permeating and penetrating nearly every industry, so complacency is a fast way to see a business die.

In business there are only three possible states:

– Growth – Stagnation – Decline

You can choose which state you operate in. If you choose “Growth” then it is essential that you embrace creative thinking and that you establish “brainstorming” sessions. By holding regular brainstorming sessions business owners can get ahead of the pack, create growth and eliminate obstacles.

Here are some tips for holding a “Brainstorming session”.

  1. Identify the issues and challenges facing the business
  2. Identify the right people to invite to participate in the session
  3. Catagorise the issues and challenges into groups and use that grouping to create an agenda
  4. Set an agenda with realistic timelines
  5. Have someone appointed to take notes and to create an “Action Plan” with execution dates and roles and responsibilities allocated
  6. Remember that there is no such thing as a dumb question or a bad idea
  7. Outline the options and really take time to expand on the options, and consider all alternatives
  8. Then select the most appropriate course of action
  9. Create the Action Plan

Be your own “disruptor”, and judge your business against your own standards, not the standards set by your competitors, or your clients low expectations.

Don’t let the market or the competition push you out, use innovation – and even the fear of failure, to drive your business forward. Great ideas are free, it only takes time and money to execute them.

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