CSW 160: Brainstorm Better with the Question BurstI have to confess I subscribe to Harvard Business Review more out of a sense of obligation than anything else (I run a B2B business, so I really should read HBR).

Hey, I’m a creative. The hardcore “businessy” articles honestly bore the bejeezus out of me, but some of the articles are about the human side of business, and those are the ones that perk up my ears, because that’s what fascinates me.

After all, I run a consultancy that exists specifically to help companies with this stuff: human interaction stuff, “soft skills,” communication, alignment, values, and how all of this has a profound impact on the success (or lack thereof) of a business.

Anyway, back to HBR.

The other day I was delighted to find an article in the March-April 2018 issue that was right up my alley as a creative. It’s called “Better Brainstorming,” by Hal Gregersen, and it describes a type of brainstorming Gregersen calls the “question burst,” which takes only four minutes, and generates questions, rather than answers.

I was fascinated with this type of brainstorming, and decided to draw up sketchnotes of the article, which I’ve posted below.

Listen to the podcast for my summary of my notes, and then give it a try. I’d love to hear your thoughts on this method!

I’ve only had a chance to try it once myself so far, and have found it challenging to stick with questions, and to write them down verbatim. (Also, I forgot to set a timer — doh!) Still, I found the exercise fruitful. It brought up some ideas I hadn’t considered, which is exactly the point!

Sketchnotes of "Better Brainstorming" by Hal Gregerson - HBR March-April 2018 article

Something Cool

Are you interested in learning to tip your toe into the waters of visual notetaking? Just today I found this article by Craighton Berman, Sketchnotes 101: The Basics of Visual Notetaking. It’s a great place to start!


Listeners Wanted!

Has the Creative Sandbox Way™ podcast made a difference in your life? Would you like to be featured on the podcast?

I love sharing listener stories, so if you have a story of how listening to the podcast has changed your life for the better in some way — big or small — I want to feature you in a Listener Spotlight.

Here’s how it works:

1. Just log into iTunes and leave a rating and review. (If you don’t know how to do that, you’ll find step-by-step instructions at creativesandboxway.com/itunes-review).

2. Then copy and paste what you wrote in your review into an email, and send it to me, along with why you want to be featured in a Listener Spotlight. How has the podcast made a difference in your life? You can email me at creativesandboxway.com/contact.

That’s it!

If I pick you for a Listener Spotlight, we’ll have a relaxed, fun conversation, and the recording of our conversation will be part of a future episode! How cool is that?

Want a creative kick start?
Check out my book!

The Creative Sandbox Way: Your Path to a Full-Color Life, by Melissa Dinwiddie

What would change for you if you could totally revel in the joy of creating? You CAN, with The Creative Sandbox Way!

You’ll learn:

  • Melissa’s 10 fool-proof guideposts that have helped thousands get joyfully creating.
  • 5 reasons why creative play is good for you, AND for the world (it’s neuroscience, baby!)
  • Why “I’m not creative” is always a lie, and how to bust it.
  • How to turn creative blocks into friends.

AND you’ll get creating right in the book itself. 

ChrisGuillebeau“It’s one part field guide, one part creative practice—and I loved it. The Creative Sandbox Way is an adventure packaged as a book.”

~Chris Guillebeau
NYT best-selling author of The Happiness of Pursuit and The $100 Startup

Buy The Creative Sandbox Way by Melissa Dinwiddie - checkout with Amazon


Hear ye, hear ye! This is to serve as official notice that all links to anything for sale, be it books or courses, are likely to be affiliate links. What this means is that if you click through said links and make a purchase, although it won’t affect the price that you pay, a few coins will jangle into my coffers, enabling me to buy a packet of hard gluten-free biscuits to feed myself and my husband for another day, or perhaps a pen with which to create some artwork. Or perhaps they will contribute toward paying a fraction of my web hosting bill, so that this blog and podcast can continue to exist. Thank you kindly for your attention.

Thanks for Listening!

Thanks so much for joining me this week. Have some feedback you’d like to share? Leave a note in the comment section below!

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Now go get creating!

xo, Melissa <3

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