created by the BC Patient Safety & Quality Council
Activities for Transforming Teams
and Igniting Change
ATTIC is a collection of tools, games, and activities to inspire innovation, teamwork and engagement in health care settings.

Idea Jackpot

Idea Jackpot immerses you in a creative thinking process. We know that some of the best ideas are the surprising and incongruous ones. For Idea Jackpot to work, you need to come up with as many ideas as you can, as quickly as possible.
This activity combines the user, a location, and a tool to help generate ideas. These elements are made into propositions that may be incredibly insightful.

Download Activity Worksheet

  • 30-90 minutes
  • Groups of 3-8
    • 4 pads of differently coloured post-it notes
    • Markers or pens
  • Source: Adapted from THNK School for Creative Leadership; The Thing from the Future

What to do

  1. Working in groups of 3-8 people, think of an innovation topic for which you want to generate new ideas. For example, how might we make education more engaging for students?
  2. Make a list of users, stakeholders, members, and employees who are involved in (or influenced by) your innovation topic, and write each of them on their own blue post-it note. For example: “teachers,” “students,” “parents,” and “universities” would each get their own blue post-it note.
  3. Repeat this process, except make a second list of spaces, areas, or rooms all the people from the first list will frequent. Write each of these on their own yellow post-it note. (These spaces, areas, and rooms should relate to the chosen innovation topic.) For example: “classrooms,” “the internet,” “coffee shops,” and “libraries” would each get their own yellow post-it note.
  4. Repeat this process once more, this time making a third list of objects, tools, and artifacts the people from the first list will use in relation to the innovation topic chosen. Write each one on its own green post-it note. For example: “chalkboards,” “computers,” “iPhones,” and “USB sticks” would each get their own green post-it note.
  5. Randomly select one post-it note from each colour group and build a proposition around the combination of user, space, and object. For example: “students,” “coffee shops,” and “iPhones.”
  6. Individually, have each player come up with as many ideas as they can in five minutes. Write each of the solution ideas on its own orange post-it note. Please note that the sky is the limit! Logic and realism are not required for this part of the process.
  7. Bring the group back together and share your ideas with the rest of the team.
  8. Play a second round, using a new combination of post-it notes.
  9. Repeat and play as many rounds as you like.
  10. Once the activity is over, have your team vote on the favourite idea generated from the activity. Then refine it further together as a group.


This is a great method for generating ideas within groups. Here are some questions you can use to debrief with your team:

  • How did this process feel for you?
  • Was it challenging?
  • What made it challenging?
  • What was it like to generate ideas with the three different categories?
  • Did anyone discover any hidden opportunities?
  • Did anyone hit the jackpot with an idea?
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