One of the most powerful techniques for problem solving is to focus on the Problem not the solution.
Let me explain.
The best way to get a good solution is to have lots of solutions to choose from. Unfortunately, many people bring you a single solution disguised as the problem.
They may say “My problem is I need a kettle.” Only one solution provide a kettle.
If they had said “My problem is that I need to boil water” we could have provided many solutions.
A manager may say “My problem is I need more people” Only one solution get more people.
If the Manager had said “My problem is the people I have cannot do the work with skills, resources and procedures we have in place” We now have more options available to solve this problem.
I remember running a problem-solving course for a successful company in Hull. The Distribution Director's opening statement was this “My problem is I need a new warehouse" You can see this is not his problem, it’s what he believes to be his single solution.
We solved the problem by re-designing his warehouse, installing high lift, narrow-isle trucks and introducing stock rotation systems.
The result was a 42% increase in storage space, a 20% increase in efficiency and a saving of £2 million on the original solution of a new warehouse.
There are many steps to problem solving but the most important is to clearly Identify the problem.
Next time a person comes to you with a problem, ask yourself has this person given me the problem or have they given me what they believe to be the solution.
Find out more information on Problem Solving.
By Mike Le Put, Director, MLP Training. For more information about MLP Training and the courses on offer, visit their website. Download 'The Motivator' - MLP newsletter. There are a number of sales programmes taking place throughout the year, for more information click here. Mike Le Put - As author, publisher, trainer and motivational speaker, Mike Le Put has trained over 10,000 people and inspired sales professionals across the UK, USA and the Far East.