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Four Tips for “Beefing Up” Your Problem-Solving Tool Box

May 15, 2009

Performance management expert Fred Nickols, the Managing Partner of Distance Consulting LLC explains four problem solving tips that can help  any organization.

Tip #1: Focus on Defining the Solved State

When solving a problem, we typically wish to do more than simply rid ourselves of some unacceptable situation. More often than not we are trying also to achieve some other, more desirable state of affairs. At the link below, Mr. Nickols demonstrates why you should pay at least as much attention to the solved state as the problem state.

Tip#2: Be Clear About All of Your Goals

Ultimately, the aim of problem solving is action. To engage in problem solving is to search for a solution. Clarity regarding your objectives is the key to problem solving.

Tip #3: Think of Problem Solving as a “Cover-the-Bases” Activity

Information does not make itself available to suit the requirements of anyone’s problem solving process. Solving a problem in a business has much in common with detective work. For examples, visit the link below.

Tip #4: Draw Pictures of the Structure of the Problem

A picture or model of the elements and relationships in a problem situation will help you to more quickly and more completely grasp the situation and figure out what to do about it. In this article, Mr. Nickols demonstrates the importance of visuals in problem solving.

To read the entire article containing these tips and ways to implement them in your business, visit the blog at, a provider of business graphics software that is endorsed by the national SCORE orgainzation.

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