Innovation methods: Brainwriting

On the way to good ideas you sometimes have to think around the corner! For this reason, there is a multitude of creativity methods to come up with new and innovative products. The best known is brainstorming, but it has a lot of problems especially in big innovation teams. For this reason the so-called Brainwriting was developed.

The aim of brainwriting is to give each participant in the innovation team a voice in the ideation process. While the brainstorming is based on the intellectual performance of the other participants and somewhat more shy team members do not get a chance to speak, the brainwriting collects ideas independently of the group.


Brainwriting process

At the beginning of the process there is the problem. In the innovation process, this often arises through interviews and conversations or through direct observations in the company or on the product. Due to the problem, the innovation team is now asked to use their individual knowledge and creativity in the ideation process to come up with new ideas or possible solutions. Each participant now writes down his own ideas and thoughts in order to develop them later together into concrete problem-solving ideas.

My experience with this method in various workshops was that by minimizing all inhibiting factors, very creative and extraordinary ideas can arise.


Advantages and challenges of brainwriting

The anonymity that is created during the entire process means that employees and managers dare to express ideas that they would otherwise not have dared to mention.

At the end of the brainwriting process, however, it is the innovation manager or moderator of the brainstorming process who must jointly transfer all the new ideas into solution approaches.


My recommendation as an innovation profiler is that you try this method in a small circle. For the first attempt, look for a clear but not too complex problem and develop new ideas. The motto here is: “The best way to have a good idea is to have a lot of ideas”.

Alexander Pinker
Alexander Pinker
Alexander Pinker is an innovation profiler, future strategist and media expert who helps companies understand the opportunities behind technologies such as artificial intelligence for the next five to ten years. He is the founder of the consulting firm "Alexander Pinker - Innovation Profiling", the innovation marketing agency "innovate! communication" and the news platform "Medialist Innovation". He is also the author of three books and a lecturer at the Technical University of Würzburg-Schweinfurt.

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