Studies seem to suggest that brainstorming does not work. I have seen it fail before. Yet I insist that every group should have a try at it. The only flaw with brainstorming is that it depends more on the attitude of the group than the aptitude. Are the participants confident enough to put forth their ideas? Do the participants believe that their ideas matter? Are the participants being forced to brainstorm? I don’t think a random group of people can come together and efficiently brainstorm. It takes quite an effort to not criticize others’ ideas to believe in yours; and a lot of individuals, though brilliant, seem to miss this. The individuals have to be ready to do this.
Another aspect that has helped before is to let every participant think over the problem individually. This gives them confidence and helps better understand others’ ideas and even build on them during the brainstorming session.
I am in no position to deny conclusions of scientific studies mentioned in the linked article. Nor am I sure of the creative quotient in the solution. But I have personally had some fantastic brainstorming sessions to come up with brilliant solutions, which would have taken longer for an individual to come up with.