By Sam Beaumont
Shake what yo mentors gave ya
Since we started back this term, one of the things I’ve realised is that most of the techniques, tricks and concepts we’re going to learn on this course have already been learned. And now as I look back through my notes I’ve realised that there’s an absolute load of them. From ‘6 hat thinking’ to ‘beating up the enemy’, all of the things we’ve learnt will help us be better creatives. But now that I know that I know them, I know that knowing them isn’t enough. You know? There’s no point in having all of these techniques in the old noggin if you end up not using them. And to my shame, I think that’s kind of what I’ve been doing.
Essentially it’s like I’ve won the lottery and then just left all the money in the bank. Especially because by being at SCA I pretty much have won the lottery. Along with 37 very lucky penguins, I’ve hit the jackpot. I’ve found the gold at the end of the rainbow. The amazing mentors are making it rain (knowledge), and I’m cashing in on some amazing contacts. Now it’s time to spend my winnings.
So for anyone who’s in a similar position to me, and still finds themselves approaching briefs like any old chump, I’ve gone through my notes and compiled a list of some of the techniques I should have (but haven’t been) using:
1. Quantity not quality – This isn’t strictly a technique but it’s lateral thinking 1-0-1 and a mindset that I’m not in enough. When we’re producing ideas there should be 0 judgement and 100’s of scamps and only that way can we produce great stuff.
2. 6 hat thinking – Maybe I’m doing this subconsciously, but I’m pretty sure I haven’t mastered it. More concerted effort needed.
3. Free writing – What happened!? At first I was all over free writing. Getting those thoughts down unfiltered and sifting back through what I’d written for some gold. It takes two minutes and you never know what you might uncover. It literally cannot hurt to do this more.
4. Random words – This is another one that takes hardly any time and has potential to produce really different ideas so I’m going to try it more. Grab a dictionary. Turn to a random page. Pick a random word. Make lists of related words. Link those back to your problem. Done.
5. List of opposites – If there’s one overall thing I haven’t yet got into my work, it’s going against the grain. Even if this technique just gets me thinking slightly more about shaking up the norm it’ll be a good thing to do more.