Mind mapping lends itself to brainstorming intrinsically. The free form nature with dynamic organization of our thoughts makes our thinking come alive. This is especially helpful in our world of distractions. Mindjet helps to focus what we are thinking through and helps us to get granular.
Here are some strategies that I have used to help drive brainstorming as a process for leaders. Consider these within your own workflow:
- Keep Mindjet open. This allows you to be ready for the random conversations and thoughts you will have throughout a random and often dizzying work day. If someone engages you in thought, propose to sit down together and use a web meeting, shared screen or project and start mapping out the dialogue.
- Organize Your Folders. There are a few strategies with regards to brainstorming. You can keep all of your brainstorms in one folder. However, that clutters quickly. Another option is to create individual folders based on themes – sales, operations, customer service, etc. A hybrid would be centered around action. Keep a folder for Ideas and a second for Action. The latter would be active. When it is done, move it to Complete. To avoid a bunch of unusable thoughts, be sure your folder organization matches your reality and lends itself to move all brainstorms mindmaps to action.
- Share your maps. Your initial brainstorm may simply be a catalyst. Allow your team to refine the map further and add more nodes, thoughts and comments. Share this out for collaboration. You might start a few of the central thoughts and invite more minds into the asynchronous process. It does not necessarily have to be real-time.
- Review and scan. Your maps become a resource for looking at past thoughts. Your priorities and passion is going to fluctuate in the midst of real and current demands. Use the past maps as part of a reflective time each week or month. This can help uncover previous ideas that may not have gotten traction. Keep an arsenal around for driving projects.
Your brainstorming process can be greatly enhanced with the passing thoughts becoming focused. Mindjet acts as an invaluable resource to move opportunities into reality in an organized way.
How can this help you in your process today?