Part of your success will depend upon your ability to lead your team through effective problem-solving on a regular basis. One suggested process* for team problem-solving includes:
*Define the Problem
*Choose a Solution
*Make a Plan
These seem obvious and straightforward, yet – quite often – teams do not follow this type of process. The main reason is that they are not led through the process properly. That’s where you come in.
Research shows that teams often solve problems intuitively – and this leads to chaos. Instead, as the group leader you can make sure that there is an actual agenda for the meeting (a BIG step forward which is obvious and often not done). The agenda should cover the above steps and the leader should make sure that the team sticks to it.
*Take time with defining the problem. People often assume that everyone on the team has the same understanding of the problem, but this is often not true. Take the time on this stage can work wonders.
*Make sure to generate multiple possible solutions. Adam Grant’s research on brainstorming tells us that we end up falling in love with a solution to soon. Consider multiple brainstorming sessions.
*Evaluation the strengths and weaknesses of each possible solution.
*Hold one another accountable for your implementation plan.
*Celebrate your accomplishments.
*Conduct an After Action Review to discuss improvements for the future.
There is a lot that has been written about effective teamwork and you can check this blog for other ideas. But, when it comes to problem solving in teams – these tips will bring you ever closer to success.
*Pittampalli, A. “Why Groups Struggle to Solve Problems Together,” Harvard Business Review online, November 7, 2019.