Over the last 30 years, I have seen Brainstorming move from a rather specialised activity, practised in advertising agencies and a few other environments, into more general use as a management technique. Or at least the word brainstorming has; the practice is another matter..
Whatever Happened to Synectics?
The article brings the story of the Synectics creative problem-solving techniques (originating in 1960) up to date. It identifies its origins with a group of inventors, who tape-recorded their meetings to research their creative process, and the resulting benefits and weaknesses. Synectics today is a set of process tools which can be used successfully in a variety of situations, either in a specific sequence (as in the original invention model) or individually according to the needs of the situation. The result is a variety of meeting models and techniques for enhancing personal effectiveness.
Creativity and Emotional Intelligence
"Creativity’ and ‘Emotional Intelligence’ are often mentioned in the same breath, correctly in my view because they are closely connected. In this article I want to describe the specific connections I see between the two, derived from my experience of creative problem-solving and invention techniques (brainstorming and synectics including ‘lateral thinking’). These methods are only one aspect of creativity, which might be called functional creativity as opposed to the expressive creativity of the arts."