How to Measure the Effectiveness of Brainstorming Sessions?

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Jeremy Lu
Manager, Australia

How to Measure the Effectiveness of Brainstorming Sessions?

Time and time again research shows that in general meetings are only 40% effective, with the rest of it being non-value adding activities. How can we measure the effectiveness of a brainstorming session just run? (Understanding such issues as production block, groupthink and manual collation associated with traditional methods of brainstorming sessions)
- Is evidence of the process sufficient?
- Does transparency of decision making create enough impetus for action?
- Also, if we are to define effectiveness as to how well the problem is solved, or the desired result achieved, what would be the best way to represent this to our stakeholders.

I’ve seen many aspiring leaders "run a workshop" entirely focused on the PROCESS (what happens at the event) rather than on OUTCOMES (what happens because of the event).
The role of the facilitator is to pull together a snap shot of the event at the end of it. Personally, I back this up with data and the "true" voice of the participants as well as incorporating the results of their decision making process of what actions they will take.

But beyond this, how do we measure the effectiveness of the brainstorm session itself? Perhaps it could be as simple as an evaluation with the participants and a follow up statement with the decision makers and those who implemented the strategy which can be attributed to that particular session.
Look forward to reading your comments.

Teacher, Thailand

Brainstorming Effectiveness Measurement

1. RESULT CRITERIA: - Meeting the objectives - Practical for implementation - Problems that led to brainstorming need have been addressed/solved 2. PROCESS CRITERIA: - Participants should include...

  Jeffrey W Pferd
Management Consultant

Measuring Meeting Effectiveness

I have used for many years the 'Benefits and Concerns' session at the end of the meeting to get a gauge of whether we accomplished the goals or addressed all the issues. It takes non-judgmental facili...

Business Consultant, Ghana

Measuring Brainstorming Effectiveness

Perfect discussion. Brainstorming’s effectiveness should be measured against the problem at stake: Why was the session commenced in the first place? Every idea should be recorded just as it was expre...

  Francis Joseph
United Kingdom

Effectiveness - Efficient Participation

At the onset participants should be made aware of the theme, objectives and expected outcome of the workshop. "Focus on Results" is key to engaging participants that they own the session. Then one wou...

  Roy Hiler, United States

Measuring Brainstorming Effectiveness

Brainstorming is simply a method of generating ideas around a specific question, issue, or problem. Therefore the "effectiveness" of the brainstorming session is measured by the quality of ideas gener...

  odhiambo tom
Manager, Kenya

Measuring Brainstorming Effectiveness

This topic is timely and will help many people, especially those in public sector. The impetus of any such sessions is a need for solution. The what, why, when, which and how (5WH) must be arrived at ...

  Francesco Ientile, Canada

Measuring Brainstorming Effectiveness

You can measure effectiveness from the perspective of a solution, comparing brainstorming results to the problem at hand and whether those results solved the problem. Brainstorming can be an individua...

Director, Indonesia

Idea's of Brainstorming Method

I am agreeing with @Roy Hiler. To add: brainstorming must give a result or some alternative result that is possible to implement. Therefor the question is, was there any result that can be implemente...

  Gandhi Heryanto
Management Consultant, Indonesia

Assessment of Brainstorming Effectiveness

In order to assess the productivity of brainstorming, some explicit quantitive and qualitative measurement criteria are necessary. Then the correlations between quantity and quality are also important...

  Amir Roggel

Brainstorming is not an Effective Method for Focusing

Refering to classical "group brainstorming" - the first generation ideation method developed by Alex Osborne in the 50s - it is a method and any method’s effectiveness should be related to the paramet...

  Murty Magda Pane
Lecturer, Indonesia

How do we Measure the Effectiveness of the Brainstorm Session Itself?

1. The Process - All participants understand the problem. - All participants provide ideas to the problem solving. - The ideas shall align the problems. 2. The Results - At the end of the session...

  Dil Prasad Shrestha, PhD
Management Consultant, Nepal

Points to Establish Effective Brainstorming Sessions

Following points may help measure the effectivess of brainstorming sessions 1. Assess the PROCESS AND NORMS to be followed. 2. Always keep in mind the OBJECTIVE of the session. 3. INVOLVE participa...

  samson chateuka

Measuring Brainstorming Sessions

Board room decision effectiveness may be measured by how well it is understood by implementers of the decision. If implementers don't support it, the chances of success are limited. In the board room ...

  Nirmala Herrkaur Strange
CxO / Board, United Kingdom

Brain Storming is a Brain Dump

Brainstorming is effectively a brain dump, so it is very important for the coordinator or facilitator of this important exercise to stay focused on why the need arose in the first place. The goal must...

  Jeremy Lu
Manager, Australia

Using Objectives

Great participation and ideas being shared so far by all here. Thank you! I have really enjoyed reading them and support the notions of: - Group participation, - Having all ideas entered - Having ...

  Jeremy Lu
Manager, Australia

Capturing Benefits and Concerns

@Jeffrey W Pferd: I like this concept. Jeffrey, how do you capture benefits and concerns quickly and effectively? Do you try to address these on the brainstorming event as well, or is this just someth...

  Vijay Bhatia
Consultant, India

Effectiveness of Brainstorming or Entire Case?

Brainstorming in itself is only a means and not the end. Therefore, if the process of participation has ensured quantity, no criticism, welcoming unusual ideas and combining ideas, the process has do...

Consultant, United Arab Emirates

Brainstorming is About Participation

Has anyone used storm board. It's a great tool for brainstorming. I’ve tried it previously. Works really well. All ideas are collated on electronic post-its and are visual in nature. Great participati...


There are no Bad Ideas in Brainstorming

There are no bad ideas during brainstorming, all contributions should be appreciated by facilitator. It’s not necessary to measure the effectiveness of brainstorming sessions, but we should measure t...

  bambang subagjo
Business Consultant, Indonesia

The Brainstorming Method is Only Half of the Process

@Vijay Bhatia: I agree. We should divide the process into two parts: firstly, the process of GENERATING IDEAS for finding alternatives; and secondly, the process of EVALUATION AND CHOOSING THE ALTERNA...

  Dr. Eyal Policar
Entrepreneur, Israel

Brain Storming by Nature Should Be a Creative Process

We must indeed differentiate between brainstorming and meetings that are achievement-oriented. Brainstorming should be done when vision is needed, unforeseen challenges are in the making, or, the othe...

  Pornpunsa Wuttisanwattana
Management Consultant, Thailand

Brainstorming is a Social Process

My perception is that group brainstorming is a social psychological activity where you require the members to bring out their ability and creativity. The results are twofold: 1. The main result is t...

  Ed Neri
HR Consultant, Philippines

Brainstorming is Part of a Larger System to Achieve Goals

The process of problem solving and decision making by the manager is one of the primary responsibilities of a manager. Both from a preventive or a reactive viewpoint. In the process of looking for alt...

  Sheryl Nuevo
Student (Other), Philippines

Assessment of Brainstorming Effectiveness

@Gandhi Heryanto: I agree with your statement. Basically, a goal is set before an activity, such as in brainstorming, sets in. That keeps it on track. Parameters are set beforehand so any brainstormin...

  Finn Svenning
Consultant, Denmark

Did the Brains Storm?

You should evaluate whether or not the participants really did storm or shake their brains. What you do with the idea's and how - is completely another question!...

Manager, Thailand

Focus on the Objective of the Brainstorming Session

We need to be clear about the objective. The outcome depends on what set as objective. Here’s the classical way to measure the effectiveness of a brainstorm event: First what we want to brainstorm ab...

  Jeremy Lu
Manager, Australia

Brainstorming is About Participation

@Shaheen: You should also check out GroupMap for customisable, brainstorming that uses simple templates and prioritisation options, along with reports of the results for the session. Enjoy!...

  Jeremy Lu
Manager, Australia

Great Discussion on Brainstorming Effectiveness

Thanks everyone, really enjoying reading the discussions and seeing the number of people interested in the effectiveness of brainstorming so that it doesn’t just is something we "do", but we’re also f...

  Dr zahra gheidar
Consultant, Iran

Creativity Inside Voice, Outside Dream

Brainstorming is a way to increase creativity. If we want to know or measure its effectiveness, we should measure creativity. In my class I measured it by pre+post test study. Its findings were exciti...

  Maurice Hogarth, United Kingdom

Assessing Brainstorming Effectiveness

Brainstorming is a process for applying creativity, to enable 'thinking outside the box' when generating options for a decision i.e. "In how many ways can we… achieve required result". Typical brains...

  Yoo Win
Student (MBA), Malaysia

Measuring Effectiveness or Stifling Creativity of Brainstorming?

A Brainstorming exercise is meant to encourage all participants to release their "unbridled" creativity to generate as many ideas as possible. By putting in some sort of measurement mechanism, wouldn'...

  Vijay Bhatia
Consultant, India

Brainstorming Creativity versus Effectiveness

@Yoo Win: any measurement (if at all) comes in only AFTER the process of brainstorming. Therefore, participants are always free to "release the unbridled creativity" because the process has nothing to...

  Fred Blomsma, Netherlands

Effective Brainstorming

It starts with the reason why you organize a meeting. For example: - If an inspector is coming within two weeks and you are out of compliance and no ideas how to solve it. The meeting is a success if...

  mohamed hesham khattab
Management Consultant, Egypt

Brainstorming in our Arab Countries

I am an Arab expert in quality management systems, conformity assessment and accreditation field for industrial products and services and I would like to say that Brainstorming sessions which are orga...


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