Zoom +  =

100 (Bad) Ideas on Zoom using MURAL

Open up a blank MURAL board and tell the group you’ll be filling it with as many ideas as they can think of, as fast as they can, with the goal being 100. Assign someone to be the sticky note creator (or ask for a volunteer who is a quick typist), and encourage everyone else to help with organizing. Stop when you hit your goal or run out of time.

Step-by-Step Instructions

  1. Given a central concept, problem to solve, or other need, prompt the group that you’re going to generate as many ideas as possible.
  2. Copy-paste a link to a blank MURAL board in chat, and have everyone move over there from Zoom.
  3. Pick someone to be the sticky note creator. Instruct everyone else not to create stickies, but help with moving them around and organizing them for easy reading.
  4. Share the goal of creating 100 unique ideas. Explain they can be bad, unpractical, or otherwise worthless, they just have to relate to your central theme and can’t be repeats.
  5. Invite a participant to share an idea (by popcorn share, by calling on them, whatever you want).
  6. Give the typist enough time to capture the idea on a new sticky.
  7. Ask someone else to share a new idea that doesn’t already exist on the board.
  8. Repeat steps 5 - 7 until you’ve hit your goal or run out of time.

Prep

Have a link to a blank MURAL board ready to copy-paste.

Context

It will be easy for the group’s excitement to flood the typist with ideas in the beginning, so your work as facilitator at the start will be to slow people down. (Pro-tip: double-clicking in an empty space on the board will create a new sticky!) As the number of stickies increases, your challenge will be continuing the flow. Reiterating the phrase, “These don’t have to be good ideas, just different ideas,” will help, as will overtly giving people permission to share bad ideas: “Who has a bad idea we haven’t captured yet?”

Some members of the group will be drawn to start color-coding or otherwise theming the ideas (e.g., based on categories into which they might fit, or arranging them by quality of idea). Push back against this tendency until after you’ve generated the 100, because the clarification process can actually interrupt or stall the ideation. Arranging them so they’re easy to read and easy to count (e.g., 10 stickies in a row, aiming for 10 rows), however, is helpful.

Substituting Apps

If you're using apps other than Zoom and MURAL, here are the specific things your software will need to be able to do:

MURAL allows for quick creation of virtual sticky notes that can be rearranged, edited, and deleted.

Author

Author HeadshotAustin, TX

Activity by Sam Killermann

Co-developer of Facilitator Cards and co-author of Unlocking the Magic of Facilitation. Longtime facilitator of gender/sexuality education.

Facilitation Testers Needed

This activity by Sam Killermann would really benefit from other facilitators testing it, tweaking it, and reporting back. If you give it a try in your virtual facilitation, all we ask is that you tell us how it went.

The main things we're wondering are regarding the context you facilitated it in (with whom, and toward what goal), how well it worked (what worked and what didn't), and in what ways you altered the instructions to make it work for you.