Presentation Designer's Toolkit

Crazy 8s Brainstorming Activity

What is it?

The Crazy Eights brainstorming method is a rapid ideation technique used to generate a lot of ideas in a short amount of time. It's helpful when you need to get the momentum going on a new project, stimulate creativity, and encourage collaboration among team members.

The method gets its name from the fact that participants are given eight minutes to come up with eight different ideas. Here's a few ways we use this activity for presentation development and design:

Visual metaphors: come up with different visual metaphors to represent a key message or theme of the presentation. These metaphors can then be used as inspiration for imagery, illustrations, and/or visual aids.

Presentation structure: brainstorm different ways to structure your presentation. For example, you could ask each participant to come up with eight different ways to open the presentation, or eight different ways to close it.

Slide content and layout: brainstorm ideas for individual slides. You could focus the activity on eight different visual aids or layouts that could be used on a specific slide.

Audience engagement: brainstorm ideas for how to engage the audience during the presentation. This can include coming up with eight interactive activities or questions to involve the audience.


      When to use it

      1. When you need to generate a large quantity of ideas quickly 

      2. When you're stuck or facing a creative block. Its fast-paced, time-bound approach can help break down mental barriers and spark new ideas that you may not have thought of otherwise.

      Remember to:

      Approach the activity with an open mind, embrace the constraints as a creative challenge, and remember to have fun.

      Here's how it works

      For groups:


      Gather a group of people who will participate in the brainstorming session.


      Give everyone a piece of paper and a pen.


      Explain the rules: participants will have eight minutes to sketch out eight different ideas related to the problem or topic at hand


      When the timer starts, everyone begins sketching their ideas on their paper.


      After eight minutes, each person presents their ideas to the group, sharing one idea at a time. Each idea should be described briefly and without too much detail.


      Once everyone has shared their ideas, the group can discuss and refine the most promising ones.

       For individuals:


      Get a piece of paper and a pen.


      Set a timer for eight minutes.


      Sketch out eight different ideas related to the problem or topic at hand.


      Once the timer goes off, review your ideas and refine the most promising ones.