Introduction

23 10 2010

On this weblog you can read the explanations and examples of techniques used during the creative sessions. The explanations are written in such way that those who have zero knowledge of these techniques can understand them easily.

What is a creative session?
A creative session is a session to generate ideas on how to solve a particular problem. When organising a creative session, you can use the Osborn-Parnes Creative Problem Solving Model. This model divides the session into six areas, each area beholds some phases.  To make sure the creative session goes the way it should go, there are some rules to it:

  • Defer judgement
  • Be open when in session (respect privacy)
  • Give extra thought to naive ideas
  • Everybody’s equal, there’s no place for arrogance
  • Go for quantity
  • BE CREATIVE!

Creative techniques
Craetive techniques are methods to stimulate the creativity during a session. These methods help people to come up with more and different ideas. The creative techniques that will be discussed on this blog are:

  • Direct analogy – Diverge phase
  • Something good – Converge phase
  • Slice & dice – Diverge phase
  • Gallery method – Converge phase
  • NAF-technique – Converge phase
  • Wishful thinking – Diverge phase
  • Random stimulation – Diverge phase
  • COCD-Box – Converge phase
  • Superheroes – Diverge phase
  • Post-it brainstorm – Diverge phase




Direct analogy

23 10 2010

Direct analogy is a technique which uses so called analogies or brain patterns. These analogies are connections people make between different objects. You will be using two objects, one inside the problem context and one outside the problem context. You can use the connections between these objects to come up with lots of new and surprising ideas.

Example
Problem/challenge: Coming up with ideas for a new shampoo
Object inside the problem context: Shampoo bottle
Object outside the problem context: A cup of tea
Connection: They both have a certain smell
Idea: Shampoo that smell like tea





Something good

21 10 2010

The technique something good starts with categorizing the ideas. After you’ve divided all the ideas into categories, you are going to pick the best idea out of every category. You will be doing this by thinking about which ideas give you the feeling of something good. After you’ve selected the best ideas in each category, you will be narrowing it down to one best idea.

Example
Problem/challenge: Coming up with ideas for a new shampoo
Categories: Ideas related to colour, smell, hair type and ‘more than shampoo’
Best idea per categorie:

  • Colour: A colour that appeals to everyone
  • Smell: A scent that makes you feel relaxed
  • Hair type: A shampoo that can handle curles and straight hair
  • More than shampoo: A shampoo that stimulates hair growth

Overal best idea: A shampoo that can handle curles and straight hair





Slice and dice

19 10 2010

Slice and dice is an attribute listing technique. It focuses on analysing and dividing the problem or challenge in parts or attributes. Every parts defines a piece of the problem or challenge. Dividing a problem or challenge in parts can help you with finding a solution. You will be looking at one part at a time and you will be coming up with solutions for every part. Later on you can combine these solutions to an overall solution.

Example
Problem/challenge: Coming up with ideas for a new shampoo
Parts/attributes: Smell, colour, hair type, ‘extras’, hair colour, ‘ingredients’, etc.





Gallery method

14 10 2010

When using the gallery method, you will be placing all ideas in a gallery kind of way. Every participant has his/her own section in the galery. Everybody shows his/her ideas as art and at a certain moment during the session, you will walk around to check out the ideas of others. The gallery method is fairly the same as the brainstorming method. The most helpful thing of showing the ideas as a gallery is that you have an overview of the ideas. When looking at all the ideas from different angles, you can come up with more and more ideas.

Example
Problem/challenge: Coming up with ideas for a new shampoo
Ideas: Shampoo with vanilla smell, shampoo for grey hair, shampoo that stimulates hair growth, etc.





NAF-technique

14 10 2010

The NAF-technique is a technique you can use at the end of your session to choose the best idea. NAF stands for New, Attractive and Feasible. With the NAF-technique you will categorize your ideas in three categories, being new, attractive and feasible. When choosing your final idea, its best if an idea is new, attractive and feasible. With the NAF-technique you can check if you have ideas like that.

Example
Problem/challenge: Coming up with ideas for a new shampoo
Idea: Shampoo with a new smell/colour, creating a shampoo with a new smell/colour is new, attractive and feasible.





Wishful thinking

14 10 2010

With wishful thinking you will be thinking of your ideal situation or solution. By using your ideal you can come up with more practical and realistic ideas. You can also use your ideal as an aim for your solution, you can think of how far you want your solution to meet your ideal.

Example
Problem/challenge: Coming up with ideas for a new shampoo
Ideal: A shampoo perfect for every hairstyle with a smell and colour everybody likes
Ideas: Shampoo with a pleasing smell, shampoo that can handle curls and straight hair, etc.