Book Me For A Speech

My Writing and Ranting

Press Room

Good Books

« Do You Have a GOOD and SIMPLE Performance Evaluation Form? | Main | More Evidence that Exposure to Economic Theory Breeds Greed »


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Bob Sutton


Thanks for the comment. I guess that my reaction is that "time was invented so you don't need to do everything all at once." So there is a time to withhold judgment, to create a safe and fast-moving setting where people can get ideas out without taking the time, emotional energy, and such to rip them to pieces. And then once you've got the pile, it is time to start stress-testing them. Thanks again.


The message I took away from Lehrer's article was that it's specifically the kind of brainstorming that Osborn promoted that "doesn't work". And Lehrer is quite clear what he means: the kind of brainstorming that includes the instruction "do not criticize".

The research he cites (which I haven't looked at myself) seems well-designed to test precisely that instruction. It is difficult to test the effectiveness of that instruction in "trained" brainstorming contexts because you'd have to have a very clear & objective way of determining that the "debate condition" group and the "no criticism" group have equally skilled facilitators. With randomly selected groups, however, you can test the effectiveness of certain simple instructions. And that's the research Lehrer cites.

I'm inclined (mainly from personal experience) to agree that brainstorming without debate hampers creativity. And I very much support your project of "teaching groups how to fight". It seems like we're witnessing the pendulum swing back from excesses of "affirmative" and "appreciate" inquiry, and back to something a little more critical. Or at least I hope that's what we're seeing here.

Maybe assholes like me will once again be able to get a word in edgewise?

collaborative leadership

Thanks for finally talking about >Why the Sharp Distinction Between "Individual" and "Group" Brainstorming is False in Real Teams - Bob Sutton

Debbie Brown

Great Topic- in the past year, I have found the process proposed here very effective-

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been saved. Comments are moderated and will not appear until approved by the author. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until the author has approved them.

Your Information

(Name is required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)

Asshole Survival

Scaling Up

Good Boss Bad Boss

No Asshole Rule

Hard Facts

Weird Ideas

Knowing -Doing Gap

The No Asshole Rule:Articles and Stories