It’s time for the final of our 7 Deadly Skills series – you’re going to be a master of great leadership skills when we’re done with you! In this instalment, we’ll be covering the importance of problem-solving within leadership.
Having great problem-solving skills will help you with both your leadership potential and your personal life. The ability to solve queries, challenges and issues will guarantee success within your business and management team.
Keep reading to discover more about our final Deadly Skill and how it could help you…
What is Problem-Solving?
Problem-solving isn’t just a skill that you need to be a great leader, but one that you should look for in your employees too. It isn’t just about answering questions correctly, but more about coming up with a variety of solutions to an issue and evaluating which one you think would be best.
A big part of successful problem-solving is coming up with suitable solutions to the problems that are presented to you – it’s easy to say “do this” or “do that”, but if doing so isn’t reasonable or achievable, you’ve not really solved a great deal. If anything, you’ve made your problem bigger!
Problem-solving is the ability to solve issues effectively and quickly, and when applying it to your work environment it means that you won’t be in danger of making rash, spur of the moment decisions that end up going wrong. Instead, you’ll be able to have confidence in the route you’ve chosen and you’ll know how to guide other team members in the right direction too.
The Foundations of Problem-Solving
1. Evaluate the Cause of the Problem
To be able to create a solution, you have to know where and how the problem began. Sourcing the start of an issue and where it came from means that the chances of repeating the issue will be smaller. It also gives you the opportunity to start thinking of the problem at the root.
Instead of ‘firefighting’ and coming up with a short-term solution, you’ll have all of the facts you need to create an effective solution that truly nips the cause in the bud.
2. Create a Set of Solutions
When it comes to solving problems, having a variety of solutions to compare is always useful. Coming up with multiple ways of addressing the issue will allow you to evaluate the possible outcomes of each one, seeing if any of the solutions could potentially create further problems and essentially weighing up the pros and cons. This will help you to minimise risk, and give you the assurance that you’re heading off in the right direction.
3. Make a Plan
Next up, it’s time to action your solution.
How will you approach applying this solution to your initial problem? This is a very important question, as there may well be various moving parts in play.
If it’s a technological problem, plan who to contact and who may help. If it’s an issue within your team, plan your approach and what you’re going to say. You should also plan out what your expected outcomes are and how will you achieve these? Having it all planned out beforehand means you’ll hit fewer road bumps along the way.
What’s that old saying: fail to prepare…?
4. Assess Effectiveness
Once you have found the solution and your plan has been executed, it’s time to assess what has gone well or what could’ve been better.
Sometimes nothing goes well, and that’s ok, knowing where you went wrong and not repeating that is key.
If everything’s great – that’s perfect! Remember what you did well and repeat that next time.
If you’ve fallen somewhere in between, you’ve learnt what works and what doesn’t. Problem-solving is an ongoing skill to develop, so it’s all about learning from your successes and failures and making sure you bear that in mind as you continue to grow as both a leader and a business.
How Will Problem-Solving Help Me?
We’ve made it pretty clear that we think problem-solving skills are pretty crucial, and learning the foundations of them is a key part of being a successful leader. But, how will this help you in day-to-day life?
Problems arise constantly, whether it’s equipment not working, systems that can’t be figured out, tension between team members or having a new member of staff on board: all of these are common problems you would need quick and efficient solutions for to make sure you don’t lose money, time or even key team members within your business.
Good problem-solving skills aren’t only needed in leadership, but in your personal life too.
Believe it or not, we are at the end of our 7 Deadly Skills journey, and what a ride it has been!
Problems arise every day and knowing how to effectively solve them without wasting too much time will benefit yourself and your business.
Applying all of our Deadly Skills to your business will make your leadership skills unbeatable. Our services are tailored to what you and your team need, meaning we can help you navigate your way deeper into any of our Deadly Skills and allow you to develop.
Ready to find out more? Send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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