Idea generation is key to success. Finding the best options and selecting the best one is vital for decision-making. Read my article to find some hacks and techniques.
1. Be creative
The best options that you can find might be out of the ordinary. Think of what you haven’t done before that could be great. Are there things that others aren’t doing that you can use to gain from?
Find many possibilities and then think critically about each one. Which is the best one to go for? What are the pros and cons? Take a data-driven approach.
Be creative, innovate, and find that one thing that no one’s thinking of. Use facts and stats when available. Get artistic as well to shine.
Sit down with your team members. A group of relevant people who truly experience what you want to find out about, are key. Ask them to bring ideas for a chosen topic or issue.
It’s vital to get as many options as possible to consider. You’ll narrow it down and find the best alternative possible later on. Make the most of inspiration from all those who spend their daily lives, and know best about such issues.
For example, in a department, the manager should benefit from knowing what happens at the operational level. By asking all those involved, they can find out best what clients experience. This is a golden opportunity for a better product or offer.
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3. Visualize ideas
Visualization is a great way to think. Vision boards or dream boards are helpful to stay inspired and remember your set goals. However, it can also support finding new ways of doing things and being creative. I make sure I also journal to keep track of my set aims.
Have you seen the power of visualization yet? How do make use of it? It’s a way to find possible solutions as well, before testing.
4. Mind mapping
Mind mapping is a handy tool. You can use pen and paper or an app. It’s visual and concise, making it easy to understand and remember.
The method is more flexible and can be edited easily, compared to linear note-taking. You can use colors to make it simple to understand. I even add symbols or icons that are illustrative.
I’m inspired to use this type of drawing to represent my set goals. It’s interesting for my vision board. When I look at it, at a glance, I see the whole picture.
5. SCAMPER technique
The SCAMPER acronym stands for ‘substitute, combine, adjust, modify, put to another uses, eliminate, reverse’. It ‘provides a structured way of assisting students to think out of the box and enhance their knowledge’, as on Wikipedia. You may find links to such handy resources at the end of my article.
I couldn’t get much information on Wikipedia on this topic. Please note that at the time of writing, I see that there’s a note indicating that ‘This article has multiple issues’. I however chose to add it to my article, as the process can be helpful.
Although the technique is made for students, I see that it could be used by many. The process can also be used in other circumstances. Although used in teaching, I find it effective for myself.
6. Problem-solving frameworks
These methods also assist in finding alternatives and solutions. In the process of coming up with suggestions, you have a range of possible solutions to choose from.
I once attended a workshop on the topic. It was fun and enriching. Through theory, we also had interactive sessions to practice.
If you’d like to read about such methods, you may choose to see my article on solving your problem in 7 steps. It introduces a method that I learned about during the workshop. You’ll find illustrative examples as well.
7. Bucket list
Create a bucket list of what you want to achieve in a lifetime. Life is short, it can be messy too. However, live in the moment and enjoy!
Everyone values different things, based on their personality and taste. Some people choose to make of list of books they want to read. Others may prefer to think about which places to visit.
Your preferred series could be special to you. It’s also likely to involve your close ones. Families will naturally do many things together.
8. Meditate for clarity
Meditation clears the mind. It brings serenity. All the hustle and bustle fade away.
With a calm mind, it’s often easier to think and ponder. There are things you can see better, with a fresh mind and eyes. On the other hand, with work burnout, energy levels tend to be lower.
Working on an article draft before noon tends to be more productive (for me) than late afternoon or evening. I like doing the most important activities earlier on during the day. Find the time of the day when you feel more energetic to do vital tasks.
9. Walking thoughtfully
Walking is a meditative exercise. It can also aid in contemplation. Why not use it for reflection at the same time?
I had taken a few sessions of mindfulness techniques so that I could practice on my own at home. I then came across walking meditation, which we had to practice during the sessions. I found it very relaxing and an opportunity to ponder.
You may have heard people saying that they love to wash dishes. It’s a task that helps them relax and an opportunity to think. Take a walk in nature, find inspiration.
10. Learn from failure
Failure is, naturally, despised. It tends to be the opposite of success. However, as long as you learn from it, it’s beneficial.
When you need to find life lessons, see what success leaders say. Take advice from the elderly. When you know what doesn’t work, avoid it.
Be brave and take calculated risks, based on past failures. Find better alternatives and choose the right ones in the future. Screen out what isn’t good and choose the best decision possible.
Idea generation is a powerful exercise. It opens up a sea of possible solutions to choose from. Make the most of it for decision-making. Would you like to comment on how you benefit from it? If you know someone who needs such tips, please share my post. Thanks!!
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