Any new is initially a vague possibility. Converting the idea into a concrete and viable proposal requires the concerned people to apply their mind, dwelling on the various possibilities, the connected issues, side effects, pros, cons, and all other matters connected with the idea. For instance, an idea to launch a new service may meet with the following questions
- What is the idea?
- What the key features of the proposed service
- How does the service work?
- Who will this service benefit, and how
- Is the product commercially viable, or is there a market for the service
- What are the resources or investment required for implementation?
- Will marketing the idea require the cooperation or approval of any third-party… and so on.
Each question would have further sub-questions. For instance, the question “will marketing this idea require the cooperation or approval of any third-party" would have further questions for any answer. For example, if a key third-party opposes the idea, questions could be “will the party rescind if offered more favorable terms," “how will offering such favorable terms affect our profitability, and the returns for other stakeholders" and so on.
Starbursting involves brainstorming by asking such probing questions, very often by playing the devils advocate is a good way to understand a new idea and cover all bases when translating the idea to a concrete plan. It allows considering all aspects to an issue, and everything that can possibly go wrong.
Successful implementation however depends on ensuring that the:
- flow of questions is systematic, and follows an order
- range of questions covered is comprehensive
- the questions remain relevant to the issue
- the questions have answers