Modern knowledge workers work almost exclusively in jobs that require them to solve business problems, take decisions, be able to 'see the big picture' and think about consequences. Most people, once they leave the formal education system, do not focus on any further learning or on continuing to develop their thinking skills. As their careers progress, they become more expert in a few things but less capable of dealing with or understanding things outside their domain of expertise. They become competent at solving problems that are routine but are less able to apply these problem solving skills in wider contexts.
What are the Course Objectives?
- Learn to describe the problem-solving process
- Understand the importance of fact finding and analysis in problem solving and be able to distinguish, evaluate and summarize relevant information.
- Identify various problem-solving techniques and approaches to problem solving
- Apply these techniques in the solution of business problems
- Understand thinking models and practice exercises to help in thinking outside-the-box and generating a larger solution space
- Be able to arrive at objective, well-reasoned decisions in reasonable time and consistent with the information to hand
Who should do this course?
The course has wide appeal. Delegates may be drawn from many different levels, with varied experience and from any area of the business. The skills developed are of especial value for delegates whose core responsibilities include the understanding and solution of business problems, especially those requiring creative and different solutions. The skills and techniques developed are core life skills and are equally applicable in the solution of 'hard' problems requiring logical reasoning and deductive techniques, such as planning, business administration reporting, business analysis or software testing as well as 'soft' problems involving people issues, generally associated with management or leadership.
Day 1: Problem Solving Process
- The problem solving process (Realising the benefits of problems, Common barriers to effective problem solving, Solving problems inastructured way)
- Defining problems/opportunities
- Identifying and structuring objectives
- Applying problem solving tools and techniques
- Logical and analytical tools and techniques
- Understanding problem analysis (Information gathering, seeing patterns, analytical thinking and deductive reasoning, root cause analysis, decomposition)
Day 2: Analytical and Creative Thinking Skills
- Different thinking types (Analytical, Critical, Creative)
- Knowing how we think
- Reasoned thinking and problem solving (including systems thinking, convergent and divergent thinking, Root cause analysis)
- Generating ideas inasolution space
- Creativity – tools and techniques
- Lateral thinking (Thinking outside the box, Creativity un-blockers)
- Decision-making and evaluation techniques