Several weeks ago we scheduled a creative meeting to work on the production pieces for our fall kickoff meeting. We had a blank piece of paper. We were in the dreaming phase of the brainstorming process.
But we had a problem…actually a couple of problems.
1. We sandwiched this creative meeting in the middle of a really busy day – a day where most of us had gone from meeting to meeting to meeting with no room to breath.
2. None of had taken any time before the meeting to explore, to think, to imagine, to expose ourselves to possibilities, or to dream.
It was obvious that this meeting was going nowhere fast.
Instead of pushing everyone to spout out ideas and force a creative direction, I pulled back on the pressure to come up with the best idea and instead we talked more about what we hoped to accomplish and communicate in this meeting. We talked about how we wanted people to feel. Imagine that…we talked about the purpose of the event!
This meeting ended early. We established the “feel” we were going for, but beyond that we didn’t accomplish much. Most important, we sent everyone off with the assignment of exploring.
What has wowed you lately?
What made you laugh?
What made you cry?
What captured your attention?
What took you to another place?
What entertained you?
What communicated a moving message?
Ending that meeting early was a good decision.
When we met the next time, there were a lot of good ideas. One idea spun into another and then another. I love those kinds of meetings!
I think we’ve landed on a strong creative direction for our fall kickoff meeting. I’ll share more about where we landed later.
I recently read a good article on the Perfect Brainstorm. You might like it!