Reason 1: More diverse idea suggestions
The first reason for involving individuals with diverse backgrounds in brainstorming sessions is that they bring diverse experiences. This can result in a much greater range of ideas being suggested than if all individuals come from the same background.
Part of the reason for brainstorming is to get different ideas suggested. Having an interdisciplinary group increases the likelihood of getting creative ideas from different areas.
Reason 2: Identifying improvements
The next benefit of having diverse groups involved in brainstorming sessions is that the diverse experiences can help identify improvements to ideas that are suggested. Part of the process of brainstorming is identifying ways of building on the suggestions of others – looking for ways of taking suggestions that on the surface do not seem feasible, and turning them into much more refined ideas. Having groups with diverse experiences can help improve this process – helping to turn suggestions that start off as an infeasible possibility into a genuine possibility.
Reason 3: Commitments to indicate that ideas are practical
A final reason why diversity can help in brainstorming sessions is that it can allow people with direct experience in a particular area to voice their support. If you have someone from manufacturing in the room, then they may be able to vouch for how an idea that seemed impossible could actually be made. Similarly, if you have someone from sales in the room, they may be able to vouch that there seems customer demand for a particular area.