SCAMPER is a very simple but powerful technique that you can use in your Stormz’s brainstormings.
The technique consists in going through several rounds of ideation (we’ll use Idea blitz) that are driven by a preconceived sets of questions. These questions leverage lateral thinking as they force the team to think in a non traditional way.
These sets of questions are clustered into 7 principles:
- S: Substitute
- C: Combine
- A: Adapt
- M: Magnify
- P: Put to other purpose
- E: Eliminate
- R: Rearrange
You will find a complete reference guide to SCAMPER in litemind blog (thx for this great ressource), but for an illustration, here are a few questions relative to the S and the M.
- Can I substitute one part for another?
- Can I use this idea in a different place?
- What can be made higher, bigger or stronger?
- What can be duplicated? Can I make multiple copies?
Again, these are just few examples, you'll find more on the internet.
So now, how could I use Stormz brainstorming software to facilitate a SCAMPER session?
In fact, it is quite straight forward, we will do a succession of Idea Blitz rounds, by asking one of the question in each round. For a better readability of the output, we will regroup the idea cards into 7 clusters corresponding to the different principles of SCAMPER.
The output will be a big list of ideas that you will be able to score or complement but this is another story.
Did I tell you that a workshop needs to be prepared?
So again, prepare the session. In this case, you will need to select which principles and questions you wanna to go through.
Then, copy-paste the questions in a document that you will be able to access during the workshop.
As usual, you will need to craft the challenge description, write it down in a new workshop and send invitations. First things, you must do is create one cluster card per letter. Add a cluster card through the “more” menu. Write the title and describe the meaning of the cluster. By the way, don't forget to switch the view to the Cluster view. Do it for every single letter you wanna go through. Now you are ready to start the session.
We will start with the Substitute cluster.
Launch an Idea Blitz. In the preparation screen, copy and paste the first question from your document to the instruction field and hit the send button. Then select the appropriate cluster so that the ideas are automatically put in the Substitute cluster at the end of the session. Select the timing, for this technique I usually give a little more time than usual to the participants to think about their ideas. Give them 5 or 10 minutes. Explain the rules and what the question means to the participants, when everyone is ready, hit the start button. During the session, check that all participants are active and that they have understood the question. If necessary, modify the question. When the session is finished, hit the stop button and discuss about the results.
You can then start another Idea Blitz, with the next question. Until you have gone through all the questions for the “Substitute” principle. Just do exactly the same thing with other principles and do as many Idea Blitz as necessary to ask all the questions. If you see that people are stucked, you might want to ask more than one question per session.
The final output is a list of ideas regrouped by SCAMPER principles. You now have a big list of ideas that you might want to explore. One of the way to continue the creative workshop would be to do several $100 activities to select the “best ideas” in each cluster. Or you could try to hybridize ideas from different clusters or complement each ideas… It really depends on your objectives.
Here we are, as you can see, Stormz brainstorming application is flexible enough to be adapted to different techniques. Furthermore by using Stormz for a SCAMPER workshop, not only you benefit from the built-in remote capabilities but also from the way ideas are generated during an Idea Blitz - i.e. individually - therefore avoiding groupthink bias.
If you test a SCAMPER sequence with Stormz, do not hesitate to come back to us with comments and feedback.
-- Alex (@ineation) from the Stormz Team.