problem solving concept
The concept of problem solving is known as one of the six types of thinking that a person uses through his previous experiences and experiences to study the problem well and from its many aspects; To solve the ambiguity in it to put the best solutions he reached to deal with this problem and solve it.
Defining the problem and its types
Define problem solving
It is a process that a person undertakes for Problem Solving he faces by identifying the problem and its details, then finding the right solutions to it, and excluding the wrong solutions using his previous experiences, knowledge and experiences.
In order to identify the types of problem and ways of Problem Solving at work or at home, you must identify the problem.
Problems whose data and objectives are clear
For example, if you know in the field of sales, and the monthly target is set at 100 pieces, you must sell the product, and on average, your monthly sales are only 40 pieces.
Problems whose data are not clear and whose objectives are clear and specific
If we take the same example above and you are told to achieve the highest percentage of monthly sales compared to competitors, then you may know how much these competitors sell and how many customers they have.
Problems whose data are clear, but their objectives are not clear and specific
For example, if you work as a sales representative for a certain company, and this company gives you a product and tells you to sell that product.
Problems whose data and objectives are not clear
On the same previous example (sales representative example), this company asked you to dispose of the goods in the store.
As long as you breathe, you can be the problem solver. Sometimes the solution comes out of the problem itself.
Types of problems as mentioned by Rittmann.
The problem is known to the teacher and the learner, but they both do not know the solution
The problem is known to the teacher and the learner, and there are many solutions, but it is not clear to the learner
The problem is not clear and the solution is unknown.
It is known to everyone that solving problems that are discovered in its early stages are easier to treat, so the problem should not be kept hidden for a long time, and the right decision should be made quickly and this problem resolved before it becomes too big and cannot be solved.
How does the problem occur?
The problem occurs when there is a difference between the expected state and the actual state
An example of the occurrence of the problem is a sales representative who was asked by a customer with a large order of a specific product and he paid the full amount and it must be delivered today, but the quantity requested by this customer is not available and you called the supplier and told you that the price has increased. Inquire about the reason and tell you that the raw material has increased in price.
Steps to solve the problem and make the right decision
1. Recognize and clearly identify the problem (discovering the problem)
Know the problem and define it clearly, as ambiguity and generalization will slow down the search for a solution no less (the problem lies in the cost of raw materials). Say (The problem is that the cost of raw materials has increased by X per piece.
2. Gathering information and data about it
Gather data and information that further clarify the problem and its related situations. Give yourself such examples, where did this happen, or will it happen?
- Will this affect the prices of other products?
- Could the price drop tomorrow or next month?
- Did the price increase include your competitors or not?
- Is there another provider that works at the old rate?
3. Determine the possible causes of the problem
Identify the possible causes of the problem The list of possible causes should be as long as possible and the unlikely ones should be enslaved later, and the question should be based on the changes that can occur.
Should you reduce the quality, packaging or delivery date?
Has the market demand for such raw materials increased?
Has the number of suppliers increased or decreased than before?
Each of these questions involves the possibility of a change and when the investigation shows that there is no change in the suspected case it can be removed as a cause.
4. Secretion of possible solutions
Develop alternative solutions, it is a waste of time to try to find solutions out of nowhere, the way to find solutions is to remove the possible causes, which were not removed in the third step, the goal is to remove the causes always closing the gap between what exists and what should be. – Reviewing policies and procedures that lead to Problem Solving – Obtaining ideas and suggestions from your colleagues, subordinates, and people who have gone through the same experience and solved it.
5. Evaluate alternative solutions
This step is based on an objective, often arithmetic, assessment of the advantages and disadvantages of each alternative. Assessments can be made more quickly and reliably if the following are available:
- Judgment and evaluation criteria (must specify and define the different metrics and aspects that must be covered by the solution such as cost, space, energies, timing and delivery methods).
- Information related to each alternative: The information collected to identify the problem is a helpful factor here, such as the data that can be obtained through different sources of information.
6. Choose from alternative solutions and make a decision
Decision-making This step is mainly a process of choosing from among the alternatives or options presented. This process can take place in a rational and systematic way, or it can be approached with intuition. A little rationality and a little intuition are often required.
7. Implement the decision and then evaluate its outcome
Work in the decision When a decision is made, it must be implemented without delay.
If there is a solution, it must be implemented. In the end, work is the basic basis for the process of Problem Solving.
Without implementing the solution, the problem will remain unresolved.
Problem Solving and making administrative decisions in the field of work
The processes of making decisions and Problem Solving are pivotal processes in the life of any person, so we have a great deal of experience with them, and whenever you move to a professional field and start making decisions and addressing problems, you accumulate a reserve of experience, so you learn from your mistakes, and in the specialized side of your work you may possess a set of knowledge and principles Or theories to invest in the development of your experience.
How can you apply the method of learning the steps of Problem Solving in a creative way to thinking skills? Here are some practical suggestions:
- Make a list of your thinking skills in relation to your field. What are your strengths and what points can you develop?
- See if you can identify excellent decision makers and problem solvers in your field that you can reach, and ask if you can interview them for a short time to find out any principles, if any, they have been developing as applied thinkers.
- Pick one bad decision your organization has made in the last 18 months, write it down as a case study, commit yourself to five key lessons to learn about decision making, and if you want to develop your moral courage, send the study to your CEO.
- Now choose any great new idea in your field within the organization you work in or any other organization. I mean innovation, a new idea that succeeded in the market, a new product or service. Again, record it as a case study and highlight it at the end of the five or six main lessons for problem solvers.
- Create a program for reading books that will suit you, right? But I shouldn’t urge you to read books. I’ve already read this book. If you enjoy reading it and find it useful, try to read one book a year on leadership. See other readings for some suggestions and a biography of a great person in your field. Again underline the basic principles in pencil. No doubt you can save time for one book 52 weeks?
- Make a notebook with all the principles, examples, tips, practicals, aphorisms, quotes, and case studies in a nutshell. When it’s complete, take it with you on an occasional train or plane ride. Read it carefully and relate it to your current experience.
- Take advantage of any opportunities that come to you to attend courses or seminars that introduce you to knowledge in the general realm of effective thinking. You must, for example, be well acquainted with the technology information that you can obtain and that you do not use at present in your field, and you must excel in the use of computers.
- Finally, make a change to seek to criticize yourself as a decision maker and a specialist in solving problems, and although the criticism is sharp and may carry negatives, you still need it in order to benefit. The hardest part about it is that you are a self learner.