Even before I joined the Denver Peak Academy, I was in love with the concept and abilities of the Idea Tree; one of Denver Peak Academy’s most powerful tools. It is one the fastest, most dynamic, and effective ways to gather and keep brainstorming ideas.
First, the Idea Tree is simple to make. It requires very few materials. Idea Trees need a piece of flip-chart paper, whiteboard or reusable surface. They also require post-its or sticky/tac-able paper, and markers (any kind will do). It can be set up and used within minutes.
Moreover, the Idea Tree gives everybody a voice. After being introduced, the Idea Tree doesn’t need a facilitator. By leveraging post-its and markers instead of our voices during an Idea Tree session, we allow passive voices to be heard, valued and recognized. You can gather ideas from your team or customers passively about whatever you want (pros versus cons, mission statements or innovative approaches to solve a problem). Best of all, the Idea Tree is the final documentation of the brainstorming event and is easy to store or turn into a digital document (via a photo for example).
Thus, in my opinion (and most of Denver Peak Academy’s Black Belts), an Idea Tree is the perfect brainstorming tool. Idea Trees ensure that you and your team or customers have a better and more effective brainstorming session. The Idea Tree is simple, fast, and inclusive. It gives everybody a voice and value. Plus, it creates a “psychologically safe space” (Charles Duhigg) and boosts collaboration. But most importantly, it’s essential to driving and sustaining a team to innovate; elevate; repeat.