Here is a really cool article from the Knowledge @ Wharton. It deals with one of the major problems with any brainstorming event – Group Think. They propose a new concept called Hybrid Brainstorming:
The key with innovation is not to get as many ideas as possible, but to get some exceptional ideas that can be game changers. Any process that equalizes all the ideas contributed by everyone will be counter to the objectives of the brainstorming. So the goal is to strike this delicate balance between being inclusive and looking for exceptional ideas. Check out the article. It has some interesting thoughts.
Terwiesch, Ulrich and co-author Karan Girotra, a professor of technology and operations management at INSEAD, found that a hybrid process — in which people are given time to brainstorm on their own before discussing ideas with their peers — resulted in more and better quality ideas than a purely team-oriented process. More importantly for companies striving for innovation, however, the trio says the absolute best idea in a hybrid process topped the Number One suggestion in a traditional model.