Problem solving is a very critical element in any work place. Everyone knows that problems are part of our day to day life but very few of us really know how to solve them effectively. Whenever somebody face a problem, ultimately individuals tend to adopt three ways
- They get anxious and want to get rid from the situation as soon as possible.
- Thought about the immediate answers of their queries.
- And the most common want is to blame any person.
A Problem seems to be a problem due to two reason, first we are always not aligned to find the solutions and secondly because of the uncertainty about the best possible solution. In any organization all such problems takes place but the real need is to be aware of such problems and to work on them. Only then we can make any organization more conflict friendly and conflict competent. Organizations have to take care about few things like being a problem solver; it’s one of the biggest challenges for any organization to overcome a tendency to have impulsive decisions.The other important thing is that before the effective problem solving, organization should know the exact meaning or the objectives of problem solving.
Problem solving is a life long skill that helps to achieve goals smoothly. It matters a lot in any organization because it helps the organizational employees in becoming a good problem solver on a self-sufficient basis or as a part of organization which further contributes the workplace productivity and finally succeeds to make an organization a problem free organization.
There are few stages which helps you to understand about how an organization passes through an effective problem solving process.
Stage 1: Document the Issue
There are two possibilities regarding a problem, either it will be too simple or it will be extremely complex. Clarity about the problem statement is very important and the good idea regarding this is to document the problem from start to end, relying only on memory documentation is not the best possible option.
To maintain a strong focus on the problem, organization must be clear about certain questions like what is the actual current situation, what are the factors which made the situation problematic? What are the hurdles? How these are effecting the organization? What can an organization do about it? And many others vary from organization to organization. The answer to these questions helps an organization to identify the real cause while the documentation provides seeking assistance. Also in future whenever an organization encounters the similar problem this documentation updates about the helping strategies which were previously adopted to overcome the problem.
Step 2: Understand the Mutual Interests
Whenever an organization seeks solution there is a need to attend the interest of all members of an organization. Most of the time it’s very difficult for an organization to keep all members at the same place but it’s important because this win-win deal helps them to reach at a final and long lasting solution. Sometimes an organization need to put down its own personal differences and has to listen to everyone, because the top interest is in benefit of organization not personal.
In first stage an organization identifies the problem, at this stage it is important to understand all the different perspectives in order to ensure all dimensions of the problem, for example what are the different strategies people currently use to deal with a problem and most importantly what will happen if the problem remains unresolved. Through this, an organization can recognize the view of different people which will clear the points of improvement.
Stage 3: Establish Multiple Alternatives
Importance of brain storming is highlighted in this stage. An organization has to list down all the possible alternative solutions that comes from different perspectives which will help to achieve the immediate goal. Separate the listing options from evaluation don’t only rely on few people. An organization can take help from people other than an organization whose opinion is worthy and they can be trusted. Always remember to generate more than one alternative solution so that if one does not work out properly, there should always be a backup to try another one.
Stage 4: Evaluate the Option
This is the stage of evaluating the options where initially these solutions seem to be unrealistic, impractical, or inefficient. But after putting little effort, these solutions turn out to be effective. Another thing is to evaluate the past strategies, which were used to deal with the problems. There are so many ways to evaluate the options for example consult any professional, any book or internet etc. Organization also has to evaluate the options in terms of its advantages and disadvantages. Options should be relevant to problems. An option can be evaluated by answering the following question:
- Is the option realistic to organization?
- Is the option manageable by the organization?
- What is the probability of success in adopting the option?
After considering all these questions the option picture will be very much clear to your mind for implementation.
Stage 5: Implementation
At this stage the best possible evaluated option is implemented. After implementation, an organization has to see how effectively the option is helping to achieve the goal and what the aftermath is. This stage involves the identification of all the stages. If at any stage an organization feels dissatisfied from the currently implemented solution then this option should be wrapped up and turn to another option from the multiple alternative solutions. Always keep in your mind that problem solving is a cycle, if not succeed in one, go for another one. Start the process again, better not stuck at one point. After passing through all these stages, an organization should follow up the compliance of the problem. Problem solving is the demand of every organization now a days and it needs some conscious attention to be in a development mode.
If the organization is conflict friendly and it becomes a good problem solver as well, it will result in an improved system .Also it helps in improving professional relationships. An addition to that, an organization will also start welcoming the problems open heartedly.