10 Problem Solving Tips For Managers

Posted on December 11, 2010


By Martin Haworth

Problem solving is a drain on your time and holds you back from more of the work you are supposed to be doing, managing and developing your people.

There are simple tools and skills to minimise the impact of problems!

It’s about taking an objective view on the way you manage and run your business or organisation. This is a winnable issue for everyone, within or outside work.

Problem solving is easy – as long as you stand in the right place to look at problems, be honest about them – and get creative!

Many managers have found the key to unlock problem solving as an issue, they have been able to do this because they…

1. Are Sensitized

They have an eye; an ear; a nose or whatever, for sniffing out problems, sometimes from a different room, even a different city, well before they reach crisis level and have skills to resolve them early.

2. Take Responsibility

They have no truck with blaming others (or even the weather!), for their problems. The buck stops with them – it’s their job to run a business where problems are minimized.

3. Find the Source

Those great at problem solving look deeper. The symptom of the problem is not it’s source – it lies below somewhere, so they get to the root of it and then make that go away.

4. Work Closely with Others

For information; for possibilities; for their solutions. This is far more likely to resolve problems – and provides a huge opportunity to build skills and relationships.

5. Are Creative

The best problem solvers look way outside their box. They have an innate ability to seek broader solutions, built on their awareness of the possibilities of an open mind.

6. Lose Their Ego!

By being able to put aside their personal beliefs, preferences and flaws even, great problem solvers are able to come up with radical, unexpected and creative solutions.

7. Create Opportunities

Through finding problems, the best problems solvers relish the chance to find solutions and challenge their own and others intellect into the mix. Problems are interesting!

8. Keep Perspective

Because problems can cause panic in the uninitiated, experts keep their eye on the big ball and spend time on problems relative to their importance.

9. Prioritise Well

When is a problem not really a problem – when it’s a speck of dust on the surface of a shiny floor. It isn’t going to ruin the dance.

Great problem solvers know what really matters (Hint – it’s not the speck of dust – unless of course, you’re the dust monitor!).

10. Have No Problems!

Because they have found the way to make sure their time isn’t wasted with problems.Problems will go away, when managers are honest enough to see where they really lie and take responsibility to fix the real issue.

Problem solving becomes history in a ‘problem-free zone’.

(c) 2010 Martin Haworth is the author of Super Successful Manager!, an easy to use, step-by-step weekly development program for managers of EVERY skill level. You can get a sample lesson for free at http://www.SuperSuccessfulManager.com.


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