Using Forensics To Solve Management Problems
Planning and problem solving are key functions of any manager – the art of deciding in advance what is to be done and then logically planning out what must be done in a logical sequence.
Planning and problem solving are important because they contribute to a well-run organisation but also because they reduce costs and link together co-ordinated activities. This reduces the chances of haphazard management which inevitably involve duplication of effort and wasting resources. This also gives a minimum time for work and tasks to be completed, making best use of facilities and infrastructure that is available.
To solve problems when they arise a clear head and a focused mind is essential. Problem solving is best delivered by doing the following in sequence:
- Get the facts about the situation: just the facts, not opinion or conjecture
- Decide what the line of action should be, using only the facts that you have gathered
- Detail and plan out the steps that need to be taken, keeping in line with the chosen plan of action
- Gather the appropriate resources that are needed to carry the plan through
- Set the standards by which you will check that progress is being made, in line with the plan that you have established
Planning and problem solving both involve developing a sense of “pre-vision” by looking at issues with a focused mindset – this includes the following:
- Looking at every situation as a whole, not just looking at the immediate, relatively small problem that has appeared
- Breaking down each problem into its component parts
- Using imagination and creativity to develop new methods
- Being impersonal and analytical as possible, avoiding bias and preconceptions
- Being able to evaluate how things are progressing and in detecting variances and poor/unexpected performance levels as they appear
- Keeping time for planning ahead
It is only by following the steps above that you can manage the problems that will inevitably come your way and to plan ahead to ensure that you are as effective and efficient as possible.
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