Back to Tools & Methods

Quality instead of quantity: assessing ideas for innovations

When you start generating ideas, it is especially important to find as many different ideas as possible. The principle here is quantity instead of quality, no matter how crazy and unrealistic the ideas may appear at first glance. In order to generate truly new, innovative approaches, therefore, developing and assessing ideas should be handled as two strictly separate processes.

Assessing and selecting

Hence the first phase in the assessment and selection of ideas should be concerned with critically questioning the ideas, discussing them, and filtering out the best. Questioning, doubting, even pessimism is now not only acceptable, but expressly desirable.


There are many different ways to assess a (previously) developed idea. One tool that can be helpful is a list of goal- or solution-oriented questions. The collected ideas are considered with regard to the objective and assessed on a scale. The more concrete the objective, the more detailed the definition of the assessment criteria can be.

The collected ideas are considered with regard to the objective and assessed on a scale. The more concrete the objective, the more detailed the definition of the assessment criteria can be. 

For example, if the criteria can be reduced to two especially relevant aspects from the list of questions, you can use a two-by-two matrix with two assessment axes. In this way, ideas can be assessed and prioritized not only in themselves, but also against one another. 

Example of a checklist for idea assessment:

  • Does the idea generate value added for customers? (customer orientation)
  • Will the idea earn sufficient profits? (profitability)
  • Is there demand for the idea? (market orientation)
  • Does the idea support the values and visions of our brand? (brand fit)
  • How easy will it be to implement the idea? (complexity)
  • Is the risk factor acceptable? (risk)
  • Is long-term use guaranteed? (sustainability of the USP)
Lara Marie Br├╝ckner
Client Services Manager
Got any questions?