This whole sorry episode highlights some DOs and DONTs for generating ideas:
- DO make sure that your objectives are clear at the start, that way you will not be left defending your motives afterwards.
- DONT use any form of censorship, not even telling people to keep quiet. They won't. Get people to buy in to secrecy if this is needed in a commercial environment. If they spill the beans they are breaking the confidence of their peers and colleagues.
- DO invite appropriate people.
- DO make sure that brainstorming is not the whole process, some filtering has to take place to weed out the wacky ideas.
- DO publish the results yourself, others may well try to take things out of context.
- DONT be naive. In any political (in the true sense, not just government) environment there will be points scoring. Some people will go to extreme efforts to sabotage yours!
So please try and be a little different, but be careful!