Requirement election methods – Brainstorming
Brainstorming is a technique, which involves a group of people during the requirement gathering process. This method is adopted for various purposes such as for defining the problem to be solved, arriving at the requirement specification, analyzing and modelling the requirements and evolving the design of the software to be developed.
It involve following steps
- Roles – Normally participants are categorized as per their roles.
- There is a leader designated for the entire group who act as a facilitator or moderator. He is the person who defines the agenda, sets the brainstorming session rolling, encouraging, motivating and leading the discussion.
- There is a person designated as a scribe, who records all ideas in a manner visible to all using flip charts, white board, transparencies or computer presentation.
- There are participants, usually limited to less than ten persons, representing the stakeholders who voice their ideas, listen to others.
- Rules – Various rules are usually framed for the collection of the brainstorming session, depending on the roles of the participants.
- The leader should allow all ideas to be expressed freely without criticism, prevent judgement, establish decorum, set time limits, and establish focus on purpose.
- The scribe should capture essence of ideas – not descriptions, write ideas in short summaries form as stated, seeking clarification if required.
- The participants should contribute their own ideas – not picking a lead form of others. They should be creative, imaginative and apply fast thinking.
- Guidelines – Various guidelines have been proposed by experts to ensure the success of brainstorming sessions such as
- Allowing group members to decide on breaks, arranging for refreshment, setting the mood for the session right using light humor at the beginning, restricting the session for two hours.
- Creating trust and report for letting creative ideas being freely expressed while session.
- The essential project document and rules of the session should be made available to all participants well in advance.
- Agenda – The agenda for brainstorming session could be on the following lines.
- First the purpose and objective of the session should be made clear to all, explaining the rules and introducing all participants.
- This should be followed up by a warm up activity of around 10 minutes to establish the right mood for all participants on a topic commonly understood by all but unrelated to agenda.
- After this, the actual brainstorming activity should commence. Ask participants to quickly come up with ideas in relation to finding ways of solving problems in line with ideas in relation to finding ways of solving problems in line with the core purpose and objectives. After an intensive session of 10 to 15 minutes call for a break before resume once again.