Leadership Lessons: Problem Solving Skills
Week Three: Analyzing the Problem we are Faced With to Create a Solution
“If you are unable to understand the cause of a problem, it is impossible to solve it.”
– Naoto Kan
The next step is to look at the problem itself. Before we find a solution we have to understand all of the details. This is best done by asking questions to further evaluate the situation. Here are some examples:
What kind of problem is this?
Is it based on decisions or actions I took or is it completely out of my control?
What do I think caused this problem?
Is there anything I could have changed to eliminate this problem?
Once we know a bit more about the obstacle in front of us we can then start to formulate a solution. Remember that if never find what cause the problem, we probably won’t find a good solution.
Next we can brainstorm. What options do we have in this situation? What could be done differently to get a different result?
When working as a team there are more factors to consider. Start by having everyone brainstorm individually. Take your time with this. Once everyone has thought of a few ideas, take turns sharing them. Give everyone a chance to speak up before discussing which one will work the best.
Always remember that questions are so important. We need to gather all of the information that we can before we can find the best course of action.
Take your list from week one. Using some of the questions above, go through each issue and identify the cause of the problem as well as a few solutions. If you need help, ask your instructors or parents. They will have some great ideas to help you with this.