Business Solutions for Your Profitable Future

Problem solving

Layoff alternative #3: Problem solving


Problems can have a negative impact on important things such as expenses, profits, productivity, quality, safety and morale. Time invested in problem solving skills can pay off very quickly and creates a more capable and flexible workforce.

Now is the time to put your people to work to really solve those problems that you have set aside over the past few years. If you think about problems you will be able to make a list of things such as those pesky accounting errors, equipment breakdowns, quality problems, service errors, delivery errors, communication problems, inventory errors and so forth.

Department by department, form a small team and charge them with the challenge of making a list of all the problems from any source they have seen in the past two years. Have them identify those that have not been fully resolved. Then ask them to put them in a prioritized order of importance/impact. They can also identify where the problem originated such as within the department, another department or sources external to the company.

Collect your lists and reprioritize them. Assign them to a resolution team with the people/department that has responsibility with the charge to find the root causes and permanent solutions. It is often wise to have the impacted party (e.g. internal customer) represented on the solution team.

Notes for success: Make sure you train all team members in how to work as a team and give them support and guidance to keep them on task and productive. Monitor and intervene as necessary to avoid frustration and wasted time. Don’t hesitate to modify or redirect projects as necessary as you learn more about the problems and proposed solutions.

For an outline of problem solving visit here:

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