Fatal Traps To Avoid When Dealing With Problems

Decision making is a key managerial role and a critical success factor for predicting career progression, hence it is important to both learn from mistakes and avoid the following fatal traps.

  1. Look for the root cause and never be satisfied with what appears to be a “quick-fix” solution. Solutions that come along too easily and immediately are a serious trap to get you into some initial action but which ultimately will just make the problem worse.
  2. Look for the nature, scope and impact of the problem in a logical and determined way. When the adrenalin flows and the pressure is on to “come up with something to sort this out” all logic tends to be lost and sensible strategies do not emerge. Take your time and come up with a quality and achievable way forward.
  3. Ask as many questions as possible to really get to understand what has happened and why. Never be satisfied with bland, off the cuff, illogical but well-meant opinions. Go for data, information and then knowledge about the situation.
  4. Is it a crisis? Immediate action/decisions are needed but deal with this in stages that can be checked and refined as the crisis unfolds. Never assume that a crisis is one-dimensional – it will have many different features.
  5. Is it a non-crisis? Not urgent/routine but action needed to prevent a crisis beginning and kicking in. Remember that your strategy should be a learning event so that it does not repeat itself.
  6. Opportunity problem? A chance to make improvements rather than dealing with a crisis is a gift because it allows you to reshuffle the deck and look at things very differently.

Avoid these traps at every opportunity!

Good Luck!

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