Define The Problem

My favorite Albert Einstein quote is, “If I had an hour to solve a problem I’d spend 55 minutes thinking about the problem and 5 minutes thinking about solutions.” Here is why:

When businesses are struggling to meet goals or lack the capacity for expansion, most will agree that the first step is a business analysis and the second is strategic planning. However, we have to take one step (or two…or three) back – to EXAMINE the problem first.

Many business owners/leaders don’t know what to analyze. This leads to the common mistake of focusing only on the external marketing and ROI. Therefore, a general analysis leads to the “jump to action” approach to start “fixing” the problem without really knowing what the ROOT of the problem is.

Problem solving requires a correlation of information before and after an analysis to find out where the problem lies.

For example, lacking sales/performance is seen as one problem in most cases. It is actually a SYMPTOM of the problem. Symptoms only show signs of the underlying problems that the business has to examine.

Common issues that lead to poor sales/performance are:

  1. Inefficient processes
  2. Poor customer service
  3. Lacking technology
  4. Lack of data usage
  5. Ineffective business strategies and misguided business activities…

The list goes on and on when examining a business to find opportunities to implement business solutions.

Performance of individuals and businesses as a whole – rely on tools rooted in operational & organizational dynamics. Performance is only one example of one business aspect to analyze.

Knowing exactly what to examine leads to a productive analysis and problem-solving process. When is the last time you spent more time asking questions and discussing the problems before discussing solutions toward business growth?