Start with a few word-association exercises to get everyone’s minds working and generate stimuli for the next step. Typically, we’ll choose two to three topics related to the business idea. So let’s say you’re launching a business that facilitates mobile payment. You might do one word association around the idea of “payment,” and one around the idea of “on the go.”
With a blank piece of paper in front of them, everyone now has to individually come up with 10 names in 10 minutes. This is an incredibly short amount of time to come up with 10 names, and that’s on purpose. It’s so people can’t get bogged down trying to come up with the perfect name, and instead just start getting names on paper. No one has time to overthink or be self-conscious. (There are no bad ideas.) If it’s helpful, they can use the words from the first exercise as inspiration.
Next, everyone passes their sheet of paper to the person to the left, and each person has to come up with five more names in seven minutes that build upon the names in front of them. This provides each person with concrete stimuli for inspiration and allows them to expand creatively on the thinking of their neighbor.
Papers get passed one more time to the left. Now each person, with 15 new names in front of them, circles their five favorites and shares with the group. As everyone is sharing, names should get visibly captured and people should be encouraged to build upon these names as they’re read aloud.