This is an excerpt of a larger work “12 Currie Success Principles”
Success Principle #6 is Execution. Problem-solving falls under this category as it requires decisiveness and action.
The first step in solving a problem is to envision a scenario in which the problem does not exist. Some psychology experts claim that one can only imagine that which one has seen. Others will beg to differ. Our imagination is vast and limitless. To begin this process, it is important that you recognize and accept this as one of the infinite possibilities of the human mind. Access to a vision of what you want something to look like is key. Give yourself permission to be a visionary.
This process of problem solving emerges as 13 dimensions evolving over four levels. But remember, when presented with a problem to solve, we must understand that the solution lies within our reach—emotionally, mentally, and in a manifested, material state. Below are the dimensions in sequences. But before you begin this process, whether it is short-term for a small problem or longer-term for a large issue, read through all of the dimensions and ruminate on them for a few days, if possible. This may not be a luxury that can be afforded for emergencies that need a swiftly executed solution, but once you become familiar with the process, this program becomes a skill set that is forever in your leadership toolbox. It can be accessed for an infinite number of purposes.
Here’s a very abbreviated version of the process, and you are welcomed to call or email if you have questions or want to learn more. Enjoy!
When you are ready to begin the process, you must set a specific, non-negotiable goal. This goal has come from your vision of what would things “look like” when that problem is solved. The goal must be in writing and must be communicated clearly to all team members in order to gain consensus. The goal must be the overarching common goal, which is embraced by all. There have been no strategies set, and no other processes articulated—just the goal. After the goal is solid, begin.
These are in list form, and it is part of a larger work, but the entire program is available at The Currie Training Center and is offered as a group class or individually (to set up a session contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org)
Level One: Identification of the problem and the possible solution(s).
1 – Purpose of the Solution: What is the purpose that the solution you seek will serve? Why do we want to do this? What will change? What will be better if this happens?
2 – The Looming Adversary: What major challenge could block the way? Assess your team’s tolerance for change. Brainstorm about obstacles, whether real or perceived, and uncover reasons why the problem may be considered as “here to stay.”
3 – Determine the Protocols, and processes that will define your solution. Think of these as service-oriented actions—they should include development of self and the team as individuals. The problem-solving process should include a gain in knowledge, experience, and skills for all the people involved in the project.
4 – Material Form is now clearly communicated to the team. What will the ideal outcome look like? Make sure all team members hold this vision.
Level Two: Commitment to the Solution (or proposed solutions).
5 – Take Ownership of the outcome, or responsibility for the success or failure to solve the problem.
6 – Ensure Engagement of as many perspectives as possible. Ignoring or dismissing another’s perspective should not be allowed on an effective team.
7 – Attune to subtle cues, synchronicities, related case studies, and signs. Listen to anecdotal suggestions. Watch for the “sleeping giants” on your team—draw them out and listen attentively.
8 – Command Integrity: This is a good time to review your progress to ensure that it aligns with your company culture, your own moral compass, and that a truly harmless solution is emerging. Your company may operate under Machiavellian principles, Buddhist teachings, or fall somewhere in between, but remember that integrity of a business is a driving force in customer retention.
Level Three: Action.
9 – Formalize and create the specific steps toward your proposed solution. Create a detailed project map with deadlines and measurement markers.
10 – Address Dimension #2 (Looming Adversary). Has it materialized? Is it still there? Has the team discovered a different challenge that now must be assessed? Resist the temptation to skip this step, as obstacles cannot be ignored.
11 – Revisit Dimension #3 (Determine the protocols). Adjust, fine-tune, calibrate, and manipulate. Do what is needed to ensure your process is still in alignment with the goal, and the vision of the problem when it is corrected.
12 – Examine the outcome. The results should be pending now, or perhaps even visible.
Level Four: Execute
13 – It’s Go Time. Ready to launch. Take Flight. Remember to revisit the entire process in order to fine-tune the project. This process can be used in small ways, such as creating an improvement plan for an underperforming employee. Or it can be used as a process to integrate an acquisition. This methodology is flexible and adaptable like a successful and nimble business enterprise should be. When a team can successfully process a problem or create an initiative that bears fruit—that is where you have magic!
Developing your highest quality employees helps them achieve their full potential, perform at a high level, and stay engaged, which improves retention rate. Click here to see the The Currie Training Center Leadership program offerings.