Accurately Stating the Existing Situation is Key to Solving Problems!

Posted by on Jun 28, 2011 in Problem Solving | 0 comments

Successful problem solving depends upon a clearly defined problem.  It’s one thing to know that a problem exists, but quite another to be able to identify exactly what the problem is.  If we make a mistake in defining the problem, we may come up with the wrong solution.
As obvious as it may seem, defining a problem is not easy.  Any situation in which the current situation is not what you would like it to be can be considered a problem.  To move from the current situation to the desired state, you need o accurately identify what about the current situation is problematic.
When people incorrectly identify the existing problem, it’s often because they don’t look at the situation objectively.  Opinions and emotions cloud their judgment and they are unable to see the situation as it really is.  Another reason may be that they are trying to solve a problem that is too big instead of focusing on a more immediate and solvable problem.
The key to accurately stating the existing problem then requires the problem solver to:
  1. Make sure the problem statement is factual and not based on opinion or emotion; and
  2. Make sure the problem statement is manageable.

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