Problem solving is essential to work place success, career progression and overall life management. We all possess problem solving abilities learnt through peers, real life experience or diligent study. Here is a mini crash course on valuable tools and tips to keep your problem solving muscles well-trained.
1.) A problem shared is a problem halved
Two minds are better than one, more than just a catchy saying but a genuine tactic for overcoming challenges at work. If you can't discuss a problem within your team or organisation, try tendering it out to industry peers. Visit Linkedin make contact via social media, speak to people who may be able to offer some insight.
2.) Dismantle the problem
Sometimes we approach problems as a whole when challenges are rarely isolated issues. By dismantling your problem you can see the different factors that contribute to it, the various individuals involved, perhaps clients, colleagues, time frames, budgets, resources etc; By unraveling the situation you can digest it in smaller chunks.
3.) Take a break
Sometimes when we stop thinking about something, even for just a few minutes that is when the solution comes to us. Take your mind off of the issue, distract yourself, have a break, do something fun or focus on a different area of your work. By redirecting your focus for a while you may be able to reinvigorate your creative juices and come up with the solution you need.
4.) Write it down
A great strategy to apply to almost any problem is to simply write it down. Describe it to yourself on paper, listing all of the elements involved. Be detailed and honest, this can help you find clarity. Once you have better understanding of a problem you are better equipped to solve it.