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Guidance notes: Advantages, limitations, unique qualities and overcoming limitations (ALUO)

Where you want to look at the pros and cons of a few shortlisted ideas, ALUO can be a helpful technique. Ideally, you want to compare between 2 – 4 ideas.

• Select the 2 – 4 ideas you want to consider.

• Use flip-chart paper and, for each idea, list all the advantages you can identify. What makes them attractive and appealing?

• When you can’t think of any more advantages, write the potential flaws and weaknesses for each idea.

• Next, write what is unusual and potentially unique about each idea.

• Finally, write down how would you overcome the limitations of each idea.

You can download the ALUO worksheet template for prompts or for a desk top review using this tool.

Source: Isaksen, S., Dorval, K., and Treffinger D. (1994), Creative approaches to Problem Solving, Dubuque, Iowa, Kendall/Hunt.