Warning: Short Rant Follows:
Is it just me or do more and more of our clients (and, sadly, some colleagues) think they can answer nutty brand problems by simply stacking the nearest conference room full of 'key stakeholders', percolating a few ideas (using creative techniques, of course) for a morning, stir, add salt and then, hey presto, emerge before lunch with an answer that removes the need for further discussion or considered thought?
While I think there can be tremendous value in said types of gatherings: - they can serve to bring key folk together, help get people on the same page with a project, help stimulate thinking that might then be worthy of further exploration etc... expedite the overall process, Iin my view at least, they should not be used as an excuse to avoid the 'hard slog' that is often required to address the big problems brand and businesses face. That is, perhaps, why they are 'difficult' problems in the first place.
So next time the phrase, "Let's workshop it" wafts over the partition in our office, I hope I'll be forgiven for either suggesting we a)use this as part of the process of getting to an answer (rather than the whole) and/or b) that perhaps a workshop might not be the best place to attempt to undertake our most considered forms of thinking.
Senior Consultant and Strategist