Tips on making creative meetings great

We have a big Catalyst creative brainstorming meeting today. 70 people together to dream big, think outside the box, and come up with some crazy ideas and antics that we might possibly pull off in October, or even sometime later in 2012 and beyond. Creative meetings are one of those things that take some intentional work to develop. So here are a few thoughts on making sure that your next creative meeting is great.

1. The answer is always "yes, and" and never "no, but" in a brainstorming meeting. Debbie downer and Mr. No aren't invited. Ever.

2. All ideas are welcome and needed. Many times the great ideas end up being an average idea that was built on and built on and built on.

3. If you have any leaning towards operations or finance or asking the question of "how much will that cost" then you are banned and can't ever come to a brainstorming meeting again.

4. Think/dream way bigger and with no limitations whatsoever. Try to develop ideas outside the norm and outside your industry or niche.

5. Make sure you do your homework. Research ideas, get on youtube for a couple of hours, see what others are doing, and intentionally find ideas and insight that will fuel conversations and idea development.

6. Record every idea that's thrown out. Capturing ideas and then being able to find them later and put them into action is crucial. Everyone thinks they can remember the best ideas, but literally within a couple of hours you'll have forgotten.

7. Music, vibe and atmosphere are crucial. Set a tone with the appropriate music, appropriate and energetic lighting, lots of snacks, and plenty of coffee and caffeine. A high energy environment makes being creative way easier.