Collaborative Cycle

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Here’s a simple and effective structure to get the most out of an assembled group of people. Use it as the basis for brainstorms and other generative meetings.

How to
  1. Remove distractions. Encourage attendees to shut computers down and stay engaged in the conversation.
  2. Set context. Give the group some context on what you want them to do together—brainstorm ideas, review user video, sort information, receive feedback, etc. (5 min)
  3. Get the content out! Start the exercise and have participants capture their insights on post-its or sketch ideas. One idea at a time. (30 min)
  4. Step back to organize what was created. Encourage discussion by finding themes and identifying gaps that will move the team forward. (15 min)
  5. Assign specific people tasks and deadlines to ensure progress. Follow up on their progress. (10 min)
Tips & Tricks

The collaborative cycle is a way of working that enables creative thinking. Don’t let people talk their way through the time or ‘nay say’ ideas. Encourage the team to think expansively and save critique for a designated time. Ideas will build off of each other, so slow starts are okay.