Problem Solving Skills

Problems are a part of work and life.  It seems they always crop up and there is never enough time to solve them properly before another problem occurs.  This causes us to temporarily patch issues to alleviate tension, but failing to completely fix an issue can lead to larger problems down the line.  Management should see problems that arise as a way to improve and tighten the processes and workflow.  A positive attitude is always an essential character trait for a successful leader

Communicate – When problem solving comes in to play, it is necessary for transparency between all involved.  Voicing concerns and points of view are crucial to the success of any business.  There must be open dialogue between employees or there will never be employees that feel safe enough to discuss issues.  Once everyone has given their input, the leader can collect the input and solve the puzzle that will help get the team back on track.

Think About Contingencies – There are great ideas that will be generated and after proper considerations, there will be a solution.  This solution will be selected, but it will take time to determine if that solution really solves the problem in the long run.  Being able to have contingency plans and re-evaluations as time progresses is necessary for any business plan.

Stop Compartmentalizing – Consider breaking down the barriers that separate an organization.  Having separate teams creates a redundancy in the organization if there is no cross-collaboration.  Ensuring that each department intersects in a meaningful way is critical to the success of the company.  If the right hand doesn’t know what the left hand is doing they may be working against each other.  The environment should be open and amenable to discussions.  You want your organization to work together and not try and self-promote and compete.

Failure Mode – This is an advanced technique in the problem solving world.  In this method, you come up with predictions in which failures may occur in the scenario proposed.  Understanding places where the problem solving solution can fail will prepare the business for any errors that may occur and potential fixes for these errors.

Take A Break – Some of the best ideas come to us when we stop aggressively searching for a solution.  The constant stress involved in problem solving can be too much at a given moment.  Walking away and loosening your mind is a way to let thoughts come in naturally.  If you try too hard, it may squash all creativity when it comes to problem solving.  So, take a break and let the ideas come as they may.

Good Strategy – Effective leaders and organizations have a well thought out strategy.  They approach problems from all sides and utilize the strengths of the organization.  They collaborate and use the right people and resources to improve their agency and solve their problem at the same time.  Their problem solving process is seamless because they are well-versed in all that it takes to succeed.

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