A visible location in a room or virtual whiteboard that looks to capture any type of topic that is not important to discuss at the time, but deemed worthy to discuss later by the group gathered. Is a means to capture the thought and intention so that it is heard and understood, and then placed somewhere so that it is not forgotten and followed up on at a later time.
Many groups of people getting together tend to go off-topic or the purpose of the discussion is in danger of being derailed. Whether the discussion is a single meeting or part of a longer workshop or series of conversations. To ensure the intent of the discussion is met, a Parking Lot is a way to capture the "off" topic/idea and then continue on. By doing so, you are more likely to achieve the main purpose of the discussion and have followup items to think on and discuss during any remaining time or in subsequent discussions. You have also looked to ensure that each individual in the group is heard, understood, and not forgotten in their contributions. When used to foster open communication and not where ideas are ceremonially dismissed, you will see increased inclusivity and open collaboration for the main topic, while also generating important insights to discuss later.
Agree on a visible location to capture topics to discuss later
Agree as a group how to go about identifying and capturing the off-topic items
Allot some time at the end of the timebox to review Parking Lot items to determine what the appropriate next steps are for them.
Check out these great links which can help you dive a little deeper into running the Parking Lot (Car Park) practice with your team, customers or stakeholders.