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Problem Solving

Facebook Twitter Cause and Effect Analysis (Fishbone Diagrams) - Problem Solving Tools from MindTools. Identifying the Likely Causes of Problems (Also known as Cause and Effect Diagrams, Fishbone Diagrams, Ishikawa Diagrams, Herringbone Diagrams, and Fishikawa Diagrams.) Find all possible problems. © iStockphoto/ragsac When you have a serious problem, it's important to explore all of the things that could cause it, before you start to think about a solution. That way you can solve the problem completely, first time round, rather than just addressing part of it and having the problem run on and on. Cause and Effect Analysis gives you a useful way of doing this. We'll look at Cause and Effect Analysis in this article. About the Tool Cause and Effect Analysis was devised by professor Kaoru Ishikawa, a pioneer of quality management, in the 1960s. The diagrams that you create with Cause and Effect Analysis are known as Ishikawa Diagrams or Fishbone Diagrams (because a completed diagram can look like the skeleton of a fish).

How to Use the Tool Step 1: Identify the Problem Example: Tip 1: Tip 2: Tip: Six Thinking Hats - Decision-Making Skills Training from MindTools. Looking at a Decision From All Points of View Look at decisions from many angles, with James Manktelow & Amy Carlson. 'Six Thinking Hats' is an important and powerful technique. It is used to look at decisions from a number of important perspectives. This forces you to move outside your habitual thinking style, and helps you to get a more rounded view of a situation. This tool was created by Edward de Bono in his book '6 Thinking Hats'. Many successful people think from a very rational, positive viewpoint. Similarly, pessimists may be excessively defensive, and more emotional people may fail to look at decisions calmly and rationally.

If you look at a problem with the 'Six Thinking Hats' technique, then you will solve it using all approaches. How to Use the Tool You can use Six Thinking Hats in meetings or on your own. Each 'Thinking Hat' is a different style of thinking. White Hat: With this thinking hat you focus on the data available. Example Key Points. How the CIA define problems & plan solutions: The Phoenix Checklist. In a recent BBH Labs post (Wind Tunnel Marketing, The Sequel: On the Need for Divergent Insight) that talked about the need for divergent thinking and stimulus in approaching problem solving (& creative ideation), Chaz Wigley, the Chairman of BBH in Asia Pacific, mentioned how the CIA‘s (I’ve always wanted to link to the CIA) Problem Definition Checklist provoked precisely this kind of approach; rounded, many-faceted, flexible.

We now have from Chaz not only the list of questions the CIA use to define problems, but also (thanks to Iqbal Mohammed) the follow-up list they use to develop the plan. Which seems kind of important too. My personal favourite question in the problem definition list is the somewhat open-ended: ‘what isn’t the problem?’. Enjoy. Why is it necessary to solve the problem? Can you solve the whole problem?