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Give each person in your group a number (1,2,3, etc.).Don’t let people share their numbers verbally or with hand signals.” There must be another piece to this puzzle that companies are missing. Almost every business impacting problem that an organization encounters involves a number of people – a workgroup, a business function, a group of people engaged in a process, relationships with outside suppliers or customers, etc.
You can have the best qualified individuals working together, but unless they are operating as a cohesive team unit, you will never see their true value potential.
Applying the team culture insight back to problem-solving, there are a few things your organization can do to boost your problem-solving performance. It is still true that a team is only as strong as its weakest player so investing in your people is a good thing.
For over 50 years, we have been working with organizations across a wide variety of industries and governmental functions to provide problem-solving training, implement process best practices, and coach teams through some really big problems.
Problem-solving skills are necessary in all areas of life, and classroom problem solving activities can be a great way to get students prepped and ready to solve real problems in real life scenarios.
By learning problem-solving skills together your team will have an easier time understanding the role that each person needs to play when a real business problem occurs. Often times companies look at process as driving conformance and consistency – that may be true.
Good processes do something more important for your employees and your teams – it provides a common baseline understanding of what needs to be done and the mechanics of execution which in turn enables them to focus more attention on the problem at hand.
Its like the bicycle analogy – once you develop proficiency in riding a bike, you can focus less on turning the pedals and more on where you want to go on a bike ride.
Problem solving processes can help your team understand what they need to do, how they need to interact with each other, what tools and resources they have at their disposal and when to seek escalation and outside involvement. With well-trained people and solid processes, the final piece of this puzzle is behavior and attitude towards accountability.
But what differentiates an organization that solves problems well from those that continually struggle? Highly effective problem solving organizations have a culture that promotes teamwork over individualism.
Teamwork is more than a group of individuals coming together to work on something – it’s about a sense of connectedness, shared purpose and collaborating in activities and the development of ideas.