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Learn to Consult Like an Expert

"What's the Big Think?"

What do all leaders have in common? They were all indoctrinated into the same problem-solving methods you are about to learn

We want to move from an organization with a haphazard approach, where we are spinning our wheels, trying to solve opaque and undefined problems, before eventually answering the wrong question. Instead, we need to evolve to a rigorous process with an effective and targeted approach to solving clearly defined problems by generating deep and relevant insight.

The goal is to follow the 80/20 rule in problem-solving. Strive for 80% impact being generated from 20% of the effort.

The Basic Approach follows the acronym, SCQR.

Solution

Complication

Question

Resolution

Solution - Get a quick background on the issue. What is the key change in the status quo that creates the need for problem solving?

Complication - What issues will impact your ability to develop an effective resolution?

Question - Ensure that the questions being defined is the most relevant question to the situation and complication laid out in previous steps. Make sure that the question is specific and focus on what information the decision-makers need to move forward.

Question Context:

Question: What are the objectives?

Decision Makers: What audience are you addressing? Who needs to decide/act?

Criteria/Measure for Success: How do you define success?

Key Forces: What concerns/issues surround the decision?

Timeframe: How quickly does an answer need to be provided?

Boundaries/Constraints: What items are off-limits?

Accuracy: What level of accuracy is needed?

Resolution - Don't Just Guess! Review all previous experiences; contact SMEs; and test your hypothesis before conducting a deep research and analysis.

What are the best practices for being an expert problem solver?

Use the 80/20 problem-solving model; collaborate with others; anticipate obstacles, use the experts, and leverage your colleagues!

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