Rolestorming is a group brainstorming method invented by business guru Rick Griggs in the 80s. Its basic premise is that you brainstorm while playing the role of another person. This could be a customer, colleague, competitor or someone with a unique perspective like Elon Musk, Mother Teresa etc. This can makes it more likely to suggest out-of-the-box, creative ideas. When taking on a role, adopting their beliefs, world view, attitudes and try to get completely into the role, ‘becoming’ the person and using ‘I’ to refer to them.
What makes it so effective is that it works around common barriers to traditional brainstorming:
- When playing the role of someone else, members are more likely to share wild or crazy ideas because it doesn't come 'from them'. In this way it can reduce inhibitions
- Stepping into someone else's shoes can give you access to more creative ideas
- Stepping to the shoes of a mentor, expert or stakeholder can give you access to ideas you wouldn't normally.