“If I were given one hour to save the planet, I would spend 59 minutes defining the problem and one minute resolving it.”
The above quote by Albert Einstein caught my attention and brought to mind the importance of the definition of a problem.
Many times in places of work or even in the community, we had employees or even friends who came to us to highlight a problem. Most of the time, they tell us about the symptoms rather than the problem. We get blurred by the differences between symptoms and problems.
Another quote by Charles Kettering, “A problem well stated is a problem half-solved” is another reminder to managers to be able to define the problem before it can be solved.
The training I had received in multinational companies taught me to state the problem correctly by having an object and a deviation. Example, “the filter is leaking oil”, where the object is “filter” and the deviation is “leaking oil”. With this understanding of defining the problem, we can avoid the frustration of solving problems and getting impatient with people.
To learn more about problem solving and decision making, please go to the category in this blog, “Problem Solving and Decision Making” on attending a training workshop to hone your Problem Solving and Decision Making Skills.