People tend to quickly classify a situation, which causes them to think and respond in predictable ways. A creative thinker will think about situations from different perspectives. Try this group exercise to get people thinking about things in different ways.
1. Pass out three cards to everyone in the group and ask them to write down a different problem statement on each card.
2. Shuffle the cards and pass out two cards to each person, putting the remainder in the middle of the table. If anyone gets his own card or one he dislikes, he should exchange it for a new one from the pile in the middle.
3. People should now pair up and synthesize their four problem statements into one new one. Present this to the group.
4. The group should now come up with one new problem statement that incorporates the best parts of everything that has been presented.
This exercise is a good way to gain understanding of the problem and what directions the group should take to solve it.