03 Nov Product Ideation — strengthening creativity & tools you can use to harness it

The shape of ideation. For those of you who are immediately turned off by the prospect of talking ideation because your own perceived lack of creativity, watch this video now. Stefan Mumaw believes that we are all creative, and furthermore, we can get better at being creative. Creativity is merely an ability to problem solve with relevance and novelty. For those who participate in product ideation brainstorms, he posits that we should ‘get to stupid quicker’, moving on from obvious ideas and to a stage when a supposed stupid suggestion unlocks a wave of valuable out-there ideas.

Ideation sprints for new products & services. Referencing the same path as Mumaw from obvious relevant ideas to crazy novel ideas, Christina Wodtke outlines some more tools for conducting product ideation sessions. This includes Freelisting which helps introverts participate and the Value Proposition Canvas for finding pains, gains and solutions. There’s also a part one.

Running a Google Design Sprint from start to end. We’re big fans of SPRINT, the book recently published by the product design folks at Google Ventures (now simply called GV). Described in it is a structured process to brainstorm, test concepts and answer critical business questions during a one to five day period. Nadav Rikover had the opportunity to take part in a workshop held inside Google’s campus and has put together a nice overview of what a sprint looks like from start to finish. If you have completed a sprint yourself, we’d love to hear your story.

Ideation Method: Mash-Up. IDEO are possibly the most respected firm in the business of building products in the world. And they have created a worksheet with a guide to help you run product ideation workshops with your team. Central to the strategy is to mash up ideas that you’ve come up with for different industries or markets to create an entirely new list of novel ideas and applications.




Paul McAvinchey
Paul McAvinchey

Paul has spent over 15 years building and collaborating on digital products with the likes of AOL and WMS Gaming. Currently, he leads business development for DXY Solutions, a leading product design firm in the Midwest with a focus on building beautiful applications for connected devices. Previously, he led product development for MedCity Media, a publishing startup acquired by Breaking Media in 2015. He's also a founder of Product Collective, a new initiative to connect product people from across the world online and in person at INDUSTRY: The Product Conference held in Cleveland annually.

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