“Houston, we’ve got a problem”.
Problem solving or finding solutions belongs to cognitive abilities and skills and it is part of the decision making. Ability to solve problems (in various degrees) is an important component of the intelligence of every person.
Problem solving belongs to managerial functions, roles and skills. For further interpretation it is important to understand a meaning of terms “problem” and “problem solving”:
- Business Dictionary explains a problem as: “A perceived gap between the existing state and a desired state, or a deviation from a norm, standard, or status quo.“
- According to Macmillan Dictionary solve means “to find a solution to something that is causing difficulties” or “to find the reason or explanation for something”
Synthesis of these interpretations we obtain the definition: “problem solving is the searching and finding under the circumstances, satisfactory solutions of the situations that require attention and management.”
Problem solving has several phases, which are described in the literature in different ways. Further is given synthesis of different interpretations:
- Define the problem - you need to determine what the problem is and what should be the solution
- Analysis of the problem - you need to determine when, where and why the problem occurred or is occuring
- Proposal for a possible solution - the processing of several possible solutions to the problem
- Select a solution - it is selected best solution to the problem
- Verifying the solution - after application of problem solving it is evaluated its effectiveness
Solving problem techniques include:
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