Brainstorming techniques in business analysis

Brainstorming is a very good way of encouraging creative thinking about a problem.

The goal of brainstorming is to generate new ideas which would be used for further analysis.

Brainstorming is a technique used to create an extensive range of options and it helps answer questions such as :

  1. What options are available to fix the issue at hand?
  2. What elements are limiting the group from moving ahead with an approach or option?
  3. What could be creating a delay in an activity ?
  4. What can the group do to solve any problems ?

Brainstorming works by concentrating on a topic or problem and then coming up with as many possible solutions to it.

This technique is usually used in a group setting because it as it utilizes the experience and imagination of all members of the group, but it can also be used by an individual to brainstorm new ideas.

To intensify creativity, participants are urged to use new ways of looking at things and when planned properly, brainstorming can be fun, interesting, and productive.

There are a few steps that have to be taken for the brainstorming session and they are:


  1. Develop a clear and succinct definition of the area of interest.
  2. Decide a time limit for the group to create ideas; the larger the group, the more time required.
  3. Identify the organizer and participants in the session.
  4. Set goals with participants and get their approval.
  5. Set the criteria for assessing and rating the ideas.


  • Share new ideas with the group without any discussion, criticism, or evaluation.
  • Document all stated ideas.
  • Motivate participants to be creative, share grandiose ideas, and build on the ideas of others.
  • Don’t restrict the number of ideas as the goal is to generate as many ideas as possible within the time period.


  • Once the time limit is reached, discuss and assess the ideas using prearranged assessment criteria.
  • Develop concise list of ideas, merge ideas where suitable, and remove copies.
  • Judge the ideas, and then dispense the final list of ideas to the suitable parties.

The business analyst should be aware that the brainstorming technique has both strengths and limitations and they are:


  • Ability to obtain many ideas in a short time period.
  • Unbiased environment which allows creative thinking.
  • Could be useful during a workshop to reduce tensions between participants.


  • The stakeholders’ engagement is dependent on individual creativity and their willingness to participate.
  • Organizational and social politics may limit overall participation.
  • Group participants must agree to avoid discussing the ideas raised during session portion but wait until wrap-up portion of the brainstorming workshop.