Top 28 Slang For Brainstorming – Meaning & Usage

When it comes to brainstorming sessions, having a common language can make all the difference in sparking creativity and collaboration. In this article, we’ve rounded up some of the coolest and most effective slang terms used in brainstorming that will take your idea generation to the next level. Whether you’re a seasoned pro or new to the game, there’s something here for everyone to elevate your brainstorming game and inspire fresh ideas. So, buckle up and get ready to inject some fun and innovation into your next brainstorming session!

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1. Spitballing

This term refers to the act of generating ideas quickly and without much thought or analysis. It is often used in brainstorming sessions or creative discussions to encourage free thinking and creativity.

  • For example, during a team meeting, someone might suggest, “Let’s start spitballing ideas for our new marketing campaign.”
  • In a design workshop, a facilitator might say, “We’re going to spend the next 10 minutes spitballing concepts for our website redesign.”
  • A teacher might encourage their students by saying, “Don’t be afraid to spitball ideas during this brainstorming exercise.”

2. Thought shower

This term is an alternative to the more common phrase “brainstorming” and is used to describe a group activity where participants openly share their ideas and thoughts without judgment or criticism.

  • For instance, a team leader might say, “Let’s have a thought shower to generate some fresh ideas for our project.”
  • During a creative workshop, a facilitator might announce, “We’re going to start with a thought shower to warm up our minds.”
  • In a classroom setting, a teacher might instruct their students, “Get into groups and have a thought shower about possible solutions to this problem.”

3. Ideation

Ideation refers to the process of generating ideas, concepts, or solutions to a problem or challenge. It is a key step in the brainstorming process and often involves creative thinking and collaboration.

  • For example, a product designer might say, “We need to spend some time on ideation to come up with innovative features for our new smartphone.”
  • During a team meeting, a manager might suggest, “Let’s schedule an ideation session to explore different approaches to our marketing strategy.”
  • A teacher might guide their students by saying, “During the ideation phase, focus on quantity rather than quality of ideas.”

4. Blue-sky thinking

Blue-sky thinking refers to a type of brainstorming or creative thinking that is unconstrained by practical or realistic limitations. It encourages participants to think freely and imaginatively, without worrying about feasibility or constraints.

  • For instance, a team leader might say, “Let’s engage in some blue-sky thinking to come up with truly innovative solutions.”
  • During a strategy session, a consultant might suggest, “We need to incorporate more blue-sky thinking to disrupt the market.”
  • A creative director might encourage their team by saying, “Don’t hold back during the blue-sky thinking phase. Let your imaginations run wild.”

5. Mind-mapping

Mind-mapping is a technique used to visually organize and represent ideas, concepts, or information. It involves creating a visual diagram that shows the relationships between different ideas or elements, often starting from a central concept or theme.

  • For example, a student might use mind-mapping to plan an essay, starting with the main topic in the center and branching out with supporting ideas.
  • During a brainstorming session, a facilitator might suggest, “Let’s create a mind map to explore the different aspects of this problem.”
  • A project manager might use mind-mapping to outline the key tasks and dependencies for a complex project.

6. Whiteboarding

Whiteboarding is the process of using a whiteboard or a similar surface to visually represent ideas, concepts, or plans. It often involves drawing diagrams, writing down key points, and creating visual representations to aid in brainstorming or problem-solving.

  • For example, during a team meeting, someone might say, “Let’s whiteboard our ideas for the new marketing campaign.”
  • In a design session, a participant might suggest, “Let’s whiteboard different user flow scenarios to see which one works best.”
  • A project manager might ask, “Can someone whiteboard the timeline for the upcoming product launch?”

7. Jam session

A jam session is an informal gathering or meeting where people come together to brainstorm, collaborate, and generate ideas in a spontaneous and free-flowing manner. It often involves bouncing ideas off each other, building on existing ideas, and exploring new possibilities.

  • For instance, a group of musicians might have a jam session to experiment with different melodies and rhythms.
  • In a business context, a team might have a jam session to generate ideas for a new product or marketing campaign.
  • During a design sprint, participants might engage in a jam session to explore various design concepts and iterate on them.
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8. Crowdsourcing ideas

Crowdsourcing ideas refers to the practice of soliciting ideas, opinions, or contributions from a large group of people, typically through an online platform or community. It involves tapping into the collective wisdom and creativity of a crowd to generate innovative solutions or insights.

  • For example, a company might crowdsource ideas for a new product by launching a contest or inviting suggestions from customers.
  • In a social media campaign, a brand might ask its followers to crowdsourced ideas for a new ad campaign.
  • A nonprofit organization might crowdsource ideas from the community to address a social issue or challenge.

9. Hackathon

A hackathon is an intense collaborative event where individuals or teams come together to work on a specific project, typically within a limited timeframe. It often involves brainstorming, coding, designing, and prototyping solutions to a problem or challenge.

  • For instance, a tech company might organize a hackathon to develop new software or app ideas.
  • In a hackathon focused on social innovation, participants might brainstorm and build prototypes for solutions to address a specific societal issue.
  • A hackathon can also be used as a platform for exploring new technologies or pushing the boundaries of existing ones.

10. Thought experiment

A thought experiment is a process of mental exploration or hypothetical reasoning used to explore concepts, ideas, or possibilities. It involves imagining various scenarios or situations to gain insights, challenge assumptions, or test the validity of a hypothesis.

  • For example, in a brainstorming session, someone might propose a thought experiment to stimulate creative thinking and generate new ideas.
  • In a scientific context, a researcher might use a thought experiment to explore the implications of a theory or concept.
  • A philosopher might engage in thought experiments to investigate ethical dilemmas or philosophical questions.

11. Ideation session

An ideation session is a collaborative meeting or workshop where participants generate and share ideas on a specific topic or problem. It is a brainstorming session focused on creative thinking and innovation.

  • For example, a team might have an ideation session to come up with ideas for a new product.
  • During an ideation session, participants are encouraged to think outside the box and share any ideas that come to mind.
  • The goal of an ideation session is to generate a wide range of ideas that can be further developed and refined.

12. Storming session

A storming session is a brainstorming meeting characterized by intense discussion and debate. It is a time when ideas clash and conflicts arise as participants work through different perspectives and opinions.

  • For instance, during a storming session, team members may argue passionately about the best approach to solving a problem.
  • A storming session is an opportunity for diverse viewpoints to be heard and for innovative solutions to emerge.
  • While storming sessions can be challenging, they are an important part of the creative process and can lead to breakthrough ideas.

13. Brain dump

A brain dump refers to the act of quickly and spontaneously writing down or sharing all the ideas, thoughts, and information in one’s mind without filtering or organizing them. It is a way to get everything out of your head and onto paper or into a digital format.

  • For example, before starting a project, a person might do a brain dump to capture all their initial ideas and thoughts.
  • During a brainstorming session, participants might do a brain dump by writing down every idea that comes to mind, no matter how wild or impractical.
  • The purpose of a brain dump is to clear mental clutter and create space for new ideas to emerge.

14. Free association

Free association is a technique used in brainstorming where participants spontaneously and freely share any ideas or thoughts that come to mind, without judgment or evaluation. It is a way to encourage creative thinking and generate a wide range of ideas.

  • For instance, during a free association exercise, participants might say the first word or phrase that comes to mind in response to a prompt.
  • Free association can help uncover unexpected connections and spark new ideas that might not have emerged through traditional brainstorming.
  • The goal of free association is to think outside the box and explore unconventional ideas without limitations.
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15. Word salad

Word salad refers to a jumble of words or ideas that are incoherent or nonsensical. It is a term used to describe the result of a brainstorming session or creative process that lacks structure or coherence.

  • For example, if someone presents a series of unrelated and disjointed ideas during a brainstorming session, it might be referred to as a word salad.
  • Word salad can be a sign that the brainstorming process needs more focus and direction to generate meaningful ideas.
  • To avoid word salad, it is important to establish clear goals and guidelines for the brainstorming session and encourage participants to stay on topic.

16. Rapid ideation

This term refers to the process of generating a large number of ideas in a short period of time. It is often used in brainstorming sessions to encourage participants to think creatively and come up with innovative solutions.

  • For example, in a design workshop, the facilitator might say, “Let’s start with a rapid ideation exercise to generate as many ideas as possible.”
  • During a team meeting, someone might suggest, “We should schedule a rapid ideation session to come up with new product features.”
  • A creative director might say, “Rapid ideation is a key part of our design process, as it helps us explore different possibilities and push boundaries.”

17. Thought jousting

This term refers to a lively and spirited exchange of ideas and arguments. It involves challenging and defending different perspectives in order to arrive at a better understanding or solution.

  • For instance, during a brainstorming session, team members might engage in thought jousting to explore different angles and possibilities.
  • In a classroom discussion, students might engage in thought jousting to critically analyze a text or concept.
  • A philosopher might say, “Thought jousting is essential for intellectual growth, as it helps us refine our ideas and challenge our assumptions.”

18. Idea incubator

This term refers to a supportive environment or process that encourages the development and refinement of ideas. It is often used to describe a setting where ideas can grow and evolve.

  • For example, a company might create an idea incubator program to foster innovation and creativity among its employees.
  • In a brainstorming session, someone might suggest, “Let’s create an idea incubator where we can explore and develop our concepts.”
  • A startup founder might say, “Our office space is designed to be an idea incubator, with collaborative areas and resources to support creative thinking.”

19. Creativity huddle

This term refers to a group discussion or meeting where participants come together to generate and share creative ideas. It is often used to describe a collaborative brainstorming session.

  • For instance, a marketing team might have a weekly creativity huddle to brainstorm new campaign ideas.
  • During a creativity huddle, team members might bounce ideas off each other and build upon each other’s suggestions.
  • A facilitator might say, “Let’s start the creativity huddle by sharing any ideas that come to mind, no matter how wild or unconventional.”

20. Spark session

This term refers to a focused session or activity aimed at sparking inspiration and generating new ideas. It is often used to kickstart the creative process and ignite innovative thinking.

  • For example, a design agency might organize a spark session where team members share inspirational images and concepts.
  • During a spark session, participants might engage in activities such as mind mapping, sketching, or role-playing to generate ideas.
  • A creative coach might say, “A spark session can help break through creative blocks and open up new possibilities.”

21. Crowdsourcing

This term refers to the practice of obtaining ideas, information, or opinions from a large group of people, typically through online platforms or social media. Crowdsourcing allows organizations to tap into the collective intelligence and creativity of a diverse group of individuals.

  • For example, a company might use crowdsourcing to gather feedback on a new product idea from its customers.
  • A nonprofit organization might crowdsource ideas for solving a social issue from the community.
  • A blogger might crowdsource suggestions for an upcoming article from their readers.
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22. Storm session

A storm session is an intense and focused brainstorming session where participants generate ideas quickly and without judgment. The goal is to generate a large quantity of ideas in a short amount of time, often using techniques like rapid ideation or mind mapping.

  • For instance, a design team might have a storm session to come up with ideas for a new logo.
  • A marketing team might have a storm session to generate ideas for a new advertising campaign.
  • A group of students might have a storm session to brainstorm ideas for a class project.

23. Spitball session

A spitball session is a more casual and relaxed brainstorming session where participants throw out ideas without much structure or formality. The focus is on generating a wide range of ideas, even if they seem unconventional or unrelated at first.

  • For example, a group of friends might have a spitball session to come up with ideas for a fun weekend activity.
  • A team at work might have a spitball session to brainstorm ideas for improving office morale.
  • A teacher might have a spitball session with students to generate ideas for a creative writing assignment.

24. Word clouding

Word clouding is a technique used to visually represent brainstormed ideas or concepts. It involves creating a visual display where words or phrases are arranged in a cloud-like shape, with the size of each word indicating its frequency or importance.

  • For instance, a team might create a word cloud to summarize the main themes that emerged from a brainstorming session.
  • A teacher might use word clouding to visually represent the ideas generated by students during a class discussion.
  • A marketing team might create a word cloud to identify key words or phrases that resonate with their target audience.

25. Innovation jam

An innovation jam is a collaborative brainstorming event or workshop where participants come together to generate innovative ideas or solutions to a specific challenge or problem. The focus is on fostering creativity, collaboration, and out-of-the-box thinking.

  • For example, a company might organize an innovation jam to generate ideas for improving their products or processes.
  • A nonprofit organization might host an innovation jam to find innovative solutions to a social issue.
  • A university might organize an innovation jam to encourage students to think creatively and come up with new business ideas.

26. Ideathon

An ideathon is an event or competition where participants come together to generate and develop new ideas within a specific time frame. It is often used in the context of brainstorming sessions or hackathons.

  • For example, “Our company is hosting an ideathon to find innovative solutions to our current challenges.”
  • A participant might say, “I’m excited to join the ideathon and collaborate with other creative minds.”
  • Another might ask, “Are there any specific guidelines or themes for the ideathon?”

27. Conceptualize

Conceptualize refers to the process of forming and developing ideas or concepts. It involves thinking abstractly and creating mental representations of ideas before putting them into action.

  • For instance, “Before starting a project, it’s important to conceptualize and plan the overall vision.”
  • A team leader might say, “Let’s take some time to conceptualize different approaches and strategies.”
  • A participant in a brainstorming session might suggest, “I think we should conceptualize our ideas using visual diagrams or mind maps.”

28. Ideafest

An ideafest is an event or gathering that celebrates and showcases a wide range of ideas and innovations. It is often a platform for individuals or organizations to present their creative projects and share their insights with others.

  • For example, “Our city is hosting an ideafest to promote entrepreneurship and creativity.”
  • A participant might say, “I’m excited to attend the ideafest and discover new ideas and inspirations.”
  • Another might ask, “What are the highlights of the ideafest? Are there any renowned speakers or workshops?”