Evaluating your Ideas

Michael Michalko, the author of Thinkertoys, has developed proven methods for brainstorming and then evaluating ideas. You don’t want to bring in the evaluating hat too early in the process but when you are ready – this Eight Factors process by Michalko can help you decide which idea to pursue.

Eight Factors

Ask the following eight questions about each idea, awarding points according to the range indicated. On question 1, for example, a score of 0 means you cant communicate the idea at all, while a score of 20 means you can communicate the idea with ease.  Ideas scoring 50+ points are likely to have great merit.

1. Can I communicate the idea completely and clearly? (0-20 points)
2. How much interest do I have in this idea? (0-20 points)
3. How good is my opportunity for implementing it? (0-20 points)
4. How good is the ideas timing? (0-5 points)
5. Do I have the skills to implement this idea? (0-10 points)
6. Would following through on this be a good application of my personal strengths? (o-10 points)
7. Does this idea have good competitive advantages? (0-5 points)
8. How unique is this idea? (0-10 points)

How did you do? Do you have a winner?

Create Your Own gift Bag

This is one of my all-time favorite ways to create a really special and affordable gift for clients, colleagues and friends.

There are so many things you can put in one of these – that's what makes it so fun – and customizable
Here are a few of my favorite things:
A candle
A package of bath Salts
A pouch of hot chocolate or tea bags
Several cards from favorite decks
A handwritten message or quote
A stone
A toy
And the list can go on and on.
A great source for gift bags is www.papermart.com
They have something to fit everyone's style.
One or two card decks can go a long way when you divide them into smaller packages. We have some great card decks in the Coaching Toys Store. Here are several that would be would be particularly good for a gift bag.
Card decks for gift bag
Pull out a few affirmations that are perfect for the person you are creating the gift bag for.
Choose just the right whimsical message for your giftee. There are 50 to choose from.
Each card has 15-20 open-ended questions on the back around a theme. These make great journaling prompts.
What does your colleague or client dream about? What do they want to acheive? Writing a book? Attracting a soul mate? Own a Lexus? Star in a movie? Pull out the cards that fit.
Check out these and other cool possibilities in the Coaching Toys Store.


Journaling With Images – An Exercise










The recent Unboxed Brain Webinar re-ignited my love of using images. There are so many creative ways to use them and the results are always rich.
Just about any powerful open-ended question can set the stage for discovery.
Below are three great open-ended questions excerpted from the JICT images Kit.

Choose a question that speaks to you and spend a couple of minutes with the images above and let each one tell you something about your inquiry.
1. When the path is unknown, how do you find your way?
2. What gets in your way?
3. What sets you free?

I'd love to hear what shows up for you!

Using Imagery with Individual Clients and Groups

Postcard collection 1

I'm a big fan of using visual imagery with
individual clients and with groups. Images are effective because they
bypass our language censors opening up new avenues for discussion,
sharing and insight. Pick-A-Postcard offers up a fun collection of
images and it's affordable.



Here are two simple ways to use imagery:


Imagery as an Ice Breaker or Introduction


Visual imagery works great as an
introductory exercise or as an ice breaker when you have a really great
open-ended question to set the stage.


I just had a conversation the other day with someone interested is using a visual image
exercise with a group of educators.  The question, "Who are you as a
teacher?" became the basis for the exercise.  Participants were asked to
choose a card that reflected who they were as a teacher. The ensuing
conversation was rich and insightful. Think about your next group. What
question would you use to set the tone of your event? I guarantee you,
answering the question through images will give you lovely surprises.
And you can always fall back on asking them to choose an image that says
something about them we can't see on the surface.


Imagery as a processing/debriefing tool


If you do experiential activities in your
workshops you know the importance of processing or debriefing the
experience. The simplest way is to ask participants to choose an image
that reflects what they learned. There is room to be creative. You might
ask them to choose an image that reflects where they were challenged or
to explore strengths that showed up. Sharing via the image actually
helps create safety to share more than they might otherwise and this
deepens the experience for everyone. It's a surprisingly powerful tool.


Learn More Here:  Pick-A-Postcard

Collage Making Software – Cool!

 Collage ct products 1I found a great way to make collages on your computer with images you have on file.

It's called Picture Collage Maker and you will find it at www.picturecollagesoftware.com

The simple collage on the left was created with the free version  however the fee based versions have a LOT more tools and options to play with. There are a ton of templates, you can put picture frames around your images, choose from a varity of masks, play with color, backgrounds and shapes and add text or clip art.You can print your collage, email it and convert it to a jpeg.

There are so many ways to use Picture Collage Maker – here are a few:

1. Use for creating a vision board

2. Create a collage for each value that you want to honor (works for goals too). Artcollage1

3. Create a collection of images from an event to use on a thankyou card or newsletter follow-up

5. Create a customized calendar (there are some cool calendar templates)

6. Create a collage image for a blog post or maybe an ebook cover

7, Use for scrapbooking or greeting cards (templates for this too).

A creative outlet and great way to create coaching structures and reminders. It's fun and they offer a free 15 day trial on the fee based versions – FYI – you do get a watermark on the free trial version.

The Right Brain Business Plan

  Book-cover-shadow Business building for creatives and artists of any sort just got a lot easier. Jennifer Lee's new book – The Right Brain Business Plan speaks the language of visually oriented right brainers and combines that with practical business practices. It's filled with creative flair and exercises to help creatives succeed. What a gift!

We are thrilled to be carrying it in the Coaching Toys Store.

By the way – Jennifer Lee will be our UnBoxed Brain guest on June 7. Stay tuned for more info.

Check it out here: The Right Brain Business Plan