Be A Little Dynamic in Your Problem Solving...
There are challenges and there are problems, both require a flexibility of thought to solve them. If we continue to think the same way then we end up with the same results and nothing progresses. Last week I had the opportunity to take part in a Dynamic Problem Solving Course. A room filled with corporate employees were poised to find new ways to solve problems. If the old ways have not worked then surely the new ways would be welcome. So there we are all expecting the solution to solutionising and the first thing we are asked to consider is how we bake a cake. Bake a cake? What is the process we use? Some would get a recipe from the internet or cookbook and follow instructions. Others were a little more spontaneous and glanced at what was in the cupboards and combined ingredients they had available. What was revealed was how most people got on with the process rather than define the type of cake. Who was the cake’s audience? Was the desired outcome a wedding cake, a Christmas cake or a birthday cake? Essentially this little exercise provided an insight into how we approach the ‘problem of baking a cake’. Yet we had not defined the type of cake or who for. Such a simple exercise can reveal how we approach problem solving.
When you bring a group together the first step is to define the actual problem. We can’t assume that we all have the same perception of the problem. Once the problem has been defined then we need to work out the intended outcome and who the audience is, if there is an audience. It is then things become creative – yes creative. Before you say ‘I am not creative,’ this is where you are wrong. Simply by placing ingredients in a sandwich is an act of creation – you created a sandwich. The fact that you select a set of clothes to wear in the morning is also an act of creation. So you may well have dormant creativity desperately desiring to explode into the problem solving arena. With this in mind, there are two types of thinking – traditional thinking, solving problems through reasoning that is already known and Lateral thinking, using reasoning that is not immediately obvious and generating ideas that may not have been considered using traditional step logic. One of the main barriers to being creative is fear – how do you overcome it? Look at the barriers and ask what it is you fear about being creative.
Once you are ready for your creative problem solving escapades there are numerous techniques you can use:
· ‘What if-ing’ – asking what if…. Numerous times and considering the repercussions
· Write down numerous ideas of how to solve the problem and resolve the issue not using the obvious answer.
· Thinking counter intuitively – this is going against the obvious to find the solution.
· Make a mind map of all potentials.
· Use the SCAMPER model –S=Substitute, C=Combine, A=Adapt, M=Magnify, P=Put to Other Use, E=Eliminate or Minimize and R=Rearrange.
· The 5 Why’s technique
· Pareto Analysis (80/20 rule)
· Cause and effect diagram / Fishbone diagram
· Cost Benefit analysis
· Grid analysis
· Force field analysis
· SWOT analysis – Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats.
The details of the above can be looked up on Google.
Once you have the concepts if is time to think critically and assess the potential solutions. This too has a potential process:
· Stop and think – be insightful
· Recognise your Assumption – be inquisitive, truth –seeking and open minded.
· Evaluate the information – systemically and analytically
· Draw conclusions – systematic, analytical and insightful
· Create a plan of action – this will be timely and analytical
Once you have a plan then does someone need to make a decision?
The Classic Decision Making Process includes:
· Define Objectives
· Collect Relevant Information
· Generate Feasible Options
· Make THE decision
· Implement and Evaluate
Another Technique is called The RAPID Decision Making Model:
With all the above in mind, there is so much more that one can learn on the Dynamic Problem Solving course and I can highly recommend it. You might find your process for baking a cake may well completely change!
Ruby Allure Books created to inspire you:)
LINKS TO AMAZON.COM:
New in Paperback: http://amzn.com/151230526X
LABYRINTHINE AMAZON.COM LINK: Link: http://amzn.com/B012FAYI5U
AUDIBLE LINK FOR A SHORT COURSE IN CREATIVE WRITING: http://amzn.com/B01390THLK
TO BUY MONEY FARM ON AMAZON.com http://amzn.com/B010F04W9O