Your Brainstorming Style: Harmonic Or Dissenting?

Think of the first word that comes to mind when you read this word:


OK, let’s try another one.

What is the first word that comes to mind when you see this word…?



Turns out about 40% of people will say:

  • Blue sky or ocean
  • Green grass

People who do so tend to be harmonic in nature. Imagine a brainstorming session looking for new ideas. The green grass people tend to agree with others, the brainstorming tends towards harmony outcomes where everyone agrees. Fun, but maybe not the most creative process.

Now, if you chose something like

  • Blue…mood
  • Green…golf

then you are a natural dissenter. You brainstorming is all about new ideas, what if…, about disagreeing with the others’ ideas. A team full of dissenters probably have nightmare brainstorming sessions – full of vituperation.

Now, as usual, a little bit of both is what the doctor ordered. Harmonics get us to agreement, but the choices might be constrained and simple. Dissenters interject new ideas and keep things fresh, but like to disagree! A bit of creative tension is what is called for…

Try the blue /green test. Illuminating.

←This Much We Know.→

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