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Crazy Eights

The Crazy Eights activity help a group of people share many visual innovative ideas. It inspires the participants to explore many innovative approaches, beyond their first idea, having to share the second, the third, up to the eighth (crazy) idea.

Running the activity:

  1. Give a paper and sharpie to each participant (or separate an area for each participant if you are using a remote board)
  2. Ask the participants to quickly sketch 8 ideas within 8 minutes
  3. Show and cluster
  4. Group conversation about the clusters of ideas
  5. Decide the next steps


At the end of the activity, you’ve got many diverse ideas.  The group should decide the next steps as per their goal. For example, the group could vote on the ideas, and the top 3 ideas could then be worked up into more refined prototypes, to be shared with potential users.

By constraining the amount of time participants have (8 minutes), there isn’t enough time for people to second-guess their ideas. This foster innovation and creativity as there is not time for being “perfect”.

By asking for 8 ideas, the participants share much more than their first idea (which usually is close to a non-innovative solution or similar alternatives).

The  Crazy Eights is a technique adapted from  the “6–8–5” gamestorming activity. This technique gained fame through the Design Sprint, as an important part of the process of materialising ideas about a product in the paper.

>> This content is part of a series on inception activities.


Paulo Caroli

Paulo Caroli is the author of the best-selling book “Lean Inception: How to Align People and Build the Right Product” (the first on a series of books on business agility). He's also the creator of FunRetrospectives.com , a site and book about retrospectives, futurospectives and team building activities. Caroli writes on this blog frequently. Receive the next post in your email. Sign up here.
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