April Sabral

/ Mindset

It is a known fact the better your problem solving abilities, the larger the problems you will get paid to solve. Challenge is, problem solving for the best leader requires a method or formula for identifying and solving the right issue to make the problem truly go away.

Does this sound familiar to you? Weekend shift has come to an end, everything has been delegated to your team for the next day and you are excited to finally get that day off to yourself. You are excited to finally relax, take in a movie or just do nothing on the couch. Its now the morning of your day off, and you think to yourself, I can check a few emails. Just to see if sales were good yesterday and then I will get back to my…awesome, day! YES! I know we all do it. What happens next is only all to familiar, you receive an email from one of your team members asking you a question. And you think, agh! I wish they could just make the decision and solve it without having to come to me for everything.

If this has happened to you, dont worry you are not alone. Problem solving skills may be the most critical area for any leader to master. Youll find when your team has the ability to solve problems, you have shown your own ability to solve the right problem.

Unfortunately, if you have not taught this art yet, then its time to develop your own problem solving abilities, so you can take that day off you truly deserve.

Lets face it, we want to solve issues and we want them solved now. The problem is that when you provide answers constantly for your team, do not teach them how to think and solve problems you are not developing their competencies for the long term. In fact, you are creating more issues for yourself, your team and your company. Learning to use a problem solving methodology, can actually improve decision making and build confidence.

One of the biggest obstacles to overcome as you take on more responsibility within any organization is developing your ability to balance decision making and problem solving effectively.

Solving bigger issues, takes bigger confidence and to have bigger confidence, you need to stop winging it and actually apply a step by step approach.

At retailU we have built the newest online video tutorial which is going live this week. Yes, a 4 part video series that looks at these four areas of problem solving;

  1. Problem Solving versus Decision Making
  2. The responsible view point to problem solving
  3. What is the problem? Knowing how to identify the right one
  4. Introducing the 5 steps to solving any issue for the long term

Along with the video tutorial, we have included personal worksheets and a personal assessment tool. These tools will help you identify gaps in your current skills and what areas to develop your problem solving skills.

Here are 4 questions to use when approaching problem solving.

  1. Whats not working?
  2. What started the problem?
  3. What options are there for solving the problem?
  4. What option is likely to solve the problem, or will this solution create more problems?

Want to grow your career? Want to increase credibility and influence? Want to strengthen your problem solving skills? Take the assessment. Identify the gaps, and work to develop and grow this critical leadership skill.

People that have Strong problem solving skills are more likely to be promoted, and take on higher leadership roles within any organization, so dont wait.

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