How much time do you spend solving problems each week?
Take a second here and think about a few current problems that you’re dealing with, e.g. out of stock products, customer complaints, unclear procedures, ambiguity in your role…
Some problems are small and easy to solve by ourselves, others are complex and require collaboration, creativity and a considerable amount of effort.
While change is to be expected and managed accordingly, we can’t afford to be solving the same types of problems over and over again.
A problem as a variation from a standard – the difference between what ‘should be’ and what ‘actually is’.
One of the best methods for solving problems is called Root Cause Analysis (RCA).
The fundamental reason why an event has occurred is called the root cause.
Here’s an example:
A car breaks down due to overheating.
The problem right now is that the car is overheating, but that’s just a symptom.
The root cause may be that the owner has neglected to maintain the car.
So, if you fix the symptom of overheating, chances are, something’s going to go wrong again (probably something bigger and more serious) because the problem hasn’t been fixed at the root.
If the owner corrects their approach to maintaining the car and gets it serviced regularly, chances of something else going wrong are significantly reduced.
People who use this technique don’t accept problems at face value, they look for the root case.
What do you think happens if we only ever treat the symptoms of our problems?
You said it, they keep occurring, keep needing to be fixed, and usually cause larger ongoing issues.
This time it’s just overheating, next time maybe the engine blows… or something like that – I don’t actually know that much about cars but you get what I’m saying.
Ok, let’s go back to the problems you thought of at the beginning, have you been treating the symptoms or have you been addressing them at their root?
If you already use RCA, high five to you.
If not, that’s ok, I’ve got you covered!
Our next Effective Problem Solving session is on Tuesday 30th May.
For only $300, you’ll walk away with the skills to be an expert problem solver. Places are limited, so click the link below to secure your spot before you miss out.
Go on, click it, it’ll make all your problems go away.*