Structured Problem Solving Techniques

I’d never worked for a hospital, so the expertise I was bringing wasn’t hospital management but a structured problem-solving method that I’d learned as a consultant. You can use these same steps to solve your challenging problems. I started by clarifying with my client the problem I was going to solve.I did this with a simple one-page introduction with three parts.

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Problem solving consists of using generic or ad hoc methods in an orderly manner to find solutions to problems.

Some of the problem-solving techniques developed and used in philosophy, artificial intelligence, computer science, engineering, mathematics, or medicine are related to mental problem-solving techniques studied in psychology.

Next, I created a logical framework – a logic map – to identify all the potential root causes of overtime and categorize them into distinct categories.

I chose “Supply-Driven” versus “Demand-Driven” at the top of my framework to organize the potential causes.

The term problem solving means slightly different things depending on the discipline.

Structured Problem Solving Techniques

For instance, it is a mental process in psychology and a computerized process in computer science.

Well-defined problems allow for more initial planning than ill-defined problems.

Solving problems sometimes involves dealing with pragmatics, the way that context contributes to meaning, and semantics, the interpretation of the problem.

There are two different types of problems, ill-defined and well-defined: different approaches are used for each.

Well-defined problems have specific goals and clear expected solutions, while ill-defined problems do not.


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