NOV 2013

50 Ideas Are Better Than One


Imagine your just starting your career and you’re given an opportunity by your CD, AD, PM or some other two letter representation of a person in advertising. Despite where the project came from you’re given the opportunity to come up with some creative ideas for a project. You’re given 8 hours to come up with some cool & clever concepts, what do you do? Sounds like a line from Keanu Reeves from the movie SPEED.

Do you come up with one great idea and sell it to your boss? Nope, cause if your one idea doesn’t make you look like a star you’re probably not going to keep that job for too long.

Could you imagine a creative agency going into a client meeting with one half assed idea? Picture the team coming in to sell their big half concocted idea to the client with their hands and nothing visual. The client would laugh and throw them out of their office. That’s mentally what’s going on in your bosses head when you try to sell her one idea with little to no thought behind it.

If you’ve been given a task to creatively solve a problem then solve it the right way. Come up with 50 ideas. If you then go to pitch your boss on those 50 ideas I guarantee more than 3 of them will stick. Your ideas don’t all need to be grand. They just need to show you are a problem solver.

Your boss will then ask you to solidify one of those ideas and you will be able to then focus on concise thoughts and details for that project. More than likely you can incorporate some of your other big ideas into the project as well.

Remember, if there is no cap on your ideas then there is no reason you can’t think of something so crazy and out of the box it blows everyone away. The hard part is trying to be original. More than likely you may not have a full original idea. It’s up to you to push beyond that first idea and into 50.

For you young creatives out there I recommend checking out the Creative Education Foundation outline for creative problem solving. It’s one among many other resources I use from time to time for solving creative problems.