26 reasons why brainstorming doesn’t work

1. Poor facilitationBrainstorming failure

2. Wrong (or poorly articulated) topic

3. Unmotivated participants

4. Insufficient diversity of participants

5. No transition from “business as usual”

6. Inadequate orientation

7. Lack of clear ground rules

8. Sterile meeting space

9. Hidden (or competing) agendas

10. Lack of robust participation

11. Insufficient listening

12. Habitual idea killing behavior

13. Attachment to old (“pet”) ideas

14. Discomfort with ambiguity

15. Hyper-seriousness (not enough fun)

16. Endless interruptions

17. PDA addiction (Crackberries)

18. Impatience (premature adoption of the first “right idea”)

19. Group think

20. Hierarchy and/or competing sub-groups

21. Imbalance of divergent and convergent thinking

22. No tools and techniques to spark the imagination

23. Inelegant ways of capturing new ideas

24. No time for personal reflection

25. Pre-mature evaluation

26. No follow-up plan


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