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Shut up & Write 2: Electric Boogaloo


About a year and a half ago, I figured out a brainstorming technique that’s highly collaborative and produces tons of strong ideas in a short amount of time. It works amazingly well, and I’m quite fond of telling people about it.

A few months ago, I shared it with Edward Boches during the BDW Making Digital Work conference here in New York. And a few weeks ago he wrote a fantastic blog article of his own about the technique.

In fact, he made it even better by giving it a kick-ass name: “Shut up & Write.”

Then, this week, I was asked to write about it for Hudson/Houston. Which is great… but Edward already wrote that article.

So, I’m going to write the sequel instead.


Now that it’s got a super-catchy name (seriously, what I used to call it was lame-lame-lame), here’s another way to harness the power of “Shut up and Write” — use it AFTER a meeting.

Try it. After your next meeting, instead of doing what we always do (rush to check emails or rush to yet another meeting), set aside 5-10 minutes to shut up and write.

Grab a blank sheet of paper and write about what you just experienced.

What do you think? What was discussed? What did you learn? How can you implement it? What are your next steps? Who’s going to make those things happen? Did you see or hear anything inspiring? What are you going to do with that inspiration? Or, was the meeting a waste of your (and maybe everyone else’s) time? How could it have been better?

When you go through this process, things happen.

You have revelations. You make decisions about where to go next.

When you don’t do it… you respond to emails.
And everything discussed in the meeting fades blissfully into the ether.

A simple 5-10 minute investment makes the previous 60-120 minutes more powerful. It’s like a protein supplement for conference calls.


If it was important enough for you to be there in the first place, it’s important enough to “shut up and write” about it afterward.

It works with more than just meetings, too. Try it after you’ve read an interesting article or blog post. Like this one, for instance.

Give it a shot and see what happens.
I offer a money-back guarantee.