The Art of Problem Solving in Business
Have you ever been in a situation where a problem has appeared and is expected to be solved promptly? Are you wondering how to increase the speed at which you acquire your solutions? Within this post are helpful solutions that could assist with success, and help you understand the art of problem solving in business.
Thinking Through Solutions
Problems that affect the business could have drastic consequences. When problems occur, they need to be solved fast and accurately. However, it is imperative to ensure that there is a balance between the time and accuracy. Often when solutions are provided fast they are not always thoroughly thought out. This can lead to them being referred to as “work arounds”. As the name suggests, the objective of the solution is to work around the problem that is currently present.
This solution does not fix the problem, it simply puts a band aid over the issue to allow the business to continue. Ideally, these can be an asset in order for business to flourish. Unfortunately, this is no guarantee that the work arounds won’t cause new problems in the future should an actual solution come in and fix the root cause, the true problem, but not be compatible with the work around being used. This is why it’s crucial to take the time to sustain the chaos created by the problem and focus on acquiring a solution that can fix everything the first time it is given.
At the start of a problem it is completely natural for stress to occur throughout the team. Its imperative to remain calm in situations like these. Embracing the emotions that stress brings can hinder a Business Analysts capability of being able to dissect the problem to find the root cause. It is important to invest a good amount of time breaking down the problem to its core.
In Transform IT Episode.12, we explore the art of problem solving in business:
When problems are first acknowledged, there is usually a good amount of information that is still missing when the information is finally given to the Business Analyst. Therefore, it is important for an Analyst to gather the information personally. This will enable them to validate information that was provided previously and to update any information accordingly.
The Importance of Focus
A pillar in the art of problem solving is the ability to remain focused. If your mind is not completely attentive to the problem at hand, the solution that will be generated may not be the best solution possible. Remember, the objective of a solution is to ensure that the problem goes away permanently not temporarily. Solutions should avoid creating other problems when implemented. This problem usually occurs when a symptom is mistaken as the main cause of the problem. After reviewing the topic for 30 minutes to an hour, it is best to take a break.
Breaks are important because they allow a Business Analyst to rejuvenate and view the problem from a different perspective. One approach would be to ask a peer with experience in the area of the problem for their interpretation. One could use this new information to gain insight on how to approach the problem from a different angle. This allows for the focus on the subject to be maintained to derive a solution.
The Art of Problem Solving in Business
Since designing a solution is essential to fixing the problem, let’s go through a process that would help derive one.
- Analyze all the information that has been gathered and received.
- Refer back to the problem to maintain direction and purpose.
- Design and document multiple solutions as prospects to resolve the problem.
By having options, a Business Analyst can readily respond to constraints that may arise during the execution phase. After that, weigh the designed solutions accordingly based on specific criteria. Typically, it is best to use criteria that would provide an efficient way to identify which solutions designed would have the best impact on performance for all stakeholders affected by the problem. This thought process is vital to ensure the correct solution is selected.
Leading with a Solution
Once the solution to a problem is identified, the next step would be implementation of the solution. Solution execution is important because it confirms to the client that the time spent on solving the problem was, ultimately, successful. To ensure the success of execution, a Business Analyst needs to identify any constraints that would delay implementation.
Some examples of this could be system dependencies, time constraints, and complexity of the implementation. To overcome this scenario, it is important that proper documentation of the solution is created. The documentation will enable the team to execute the implementation accordingly should delays halt the flow of process. Remember, a solution is meaningless if it cannot be properly implemented.
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