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  • 1. Soft Skills for a Digital Workplace: Problem Solving and Decision Making Unit B: Solving the Problem
  • 2. ObjectivesGather and analyze dataDevelop alternativesEvaluate optionsImplement the solution
  • 3. ObjectivesMonitor and manage the solutionVerify the solutionUse adaptive techniquesDevelop ethical solutions
  • 4. Gathering and Analyzing DataBefore you can solve a businessproblem, you should gather relevantdata and analyze itSuccessful business decisions arebased on sound informationTo systematically gather and analyzethe data related to your problem, startby identifying your goal and lookingfor information related to it
  • 5. Gathering and Analyzing DataGuidelines for gathering data: Define your data needs Do not overestimate what you know about the problem Document the data and its sources Examine existing information first Rely on people as your most important resource Consider interrelationships
  • 6. Gathering and Analyzing DataViewing data in different ways
  • 7. Developing AlternativesAfter researching a problem andcollecting data, start to consideralternatives and solutionsThis creating phase of the processrequires imagination and intuition
  • 8. Developing AlternativesGuidelines for developingalternatives: Think creatively Brainstorm ideas Ask others for advice Develop a mind map
  • 9. Analyzing ProblemsBrainstorming
  • 10. Analyzing ProblemsMind Map
  • 11. Evaluating OptionsAnalyze the trade-offs amongcompeting needs and optionsYour goal should be to develop agood solution by evaluating,modifying, and improving on yourideasAsses each alternative carefullyUse objective criteria to avoid makingsnap decisions
  • 12. Evaluating OptionsSteps in evaluation options: Choose an evaluation method Select the criteria Weigh your criteria Rate the alternatives Make a decision
  • 13. Implementing the SolutionMoving from planning toimplementation is a significantmilestoneDuring implementation, you begin tomake decisions, take actions, and putyour plans into practiceCommunicate clearly and frequentlyduring this stageAct decisively rather than planningendlessly
  • 14. Implementing the SolutionGuidelines for implementing asolution: Get approval from the problem owner Develop a plan Notify stakeholders Anticipate opposition Take action
  • 15. Monitoring and Managing the SolutionMost solutions involve relatedchoices, tasks, and the participationof othersManagers, coworkers, andstakeholders expect you to dealprofessionally and competently withinterruptions, delays, and unexpectedeventsPlanning for and identifying troublequickly helps you minimize disruptionand problems
  • 16. Monitoring and Managing the SolutionGuidelines for monitoring andmanaging the solution: Identify key variables Select an appropriate level of monitoring Involve others with the process Be persistent Make corrections promptly
  • 17. Monitoring and Managing the SolutionLevels of monitoring
  • 18. Verifying the SolutionExpect surprises duringimplementationStay involved with the project andmake necessary corrections alongthe wayAsk yourself and others: How well is the solution working How realistic are the objectives What is not working as expected
  • 19. Verifying the SolutionDo’s and Don’ts of verifying asolution: Define success Test your solution Avoid the problem in the future Learn from the process Take credit for your success
  • 20. Using Adaptive TechniquesAdaptive techniques involve acombination of intuition, logic, andcommon senseAdaptive techniques are less precisethan traditional problem-solvingmethods, but are appropriate in manycases
  • 21. Using Adaptive TechniquesDo’s and Don’ts for adaptivetechniques: Consider when to use adaptive techniques Manage by exception Stagger your decisions Hedge your bets Delay or defer a solution
  • 22. Using Adaptive TechniquesAppropriate times to use adaptivetechniques: You have a limited amount of time to work An exhaustive analysis is not needed The risks are minimal and downside costs are low The solution is easily reversible
  • 23. Developing Ethical SolutionsEthics are standards of behavior thatdirect how people should actEthics involves making moral decisionsand choosing between right and wrongWhen applied to problem solving, ethicalbehavior leads to appropriate decisions,not necessarily the optimal onesConsider situations from an ethical, aswell as a practical, perspective
  • 24. Developing Ethical SolutionsGuidelines for developing ethicalsolutions: Identify ethical issues Compare costs and benefits Consider other people Serve broad interests Be true to yourself
  • 25. Technology@Work: MashupsA mashup is a Web application thatcombines features or informationfrom more than one sourceBusinesses are using mashups todevelop views of information that aidin decision makingBusiness mashups typically combinedata from internal and public sources,and publish the results within thecompany for employees to use
  • 26. Technology@Work: MashupsJoblighted, a mashup of Google Maps and online job services
  • 27. SummaryGather relevant data and analyze it tofind trends, indicators, and other relatedinformationDevelop alternative solutionsEvaluate all optionsImplementation is a milestone step inthe problem solving processCarefully monitor and manage theimplemented solution
  • 28. SummaryVerify the solution and expect surprisesUse adaptive techniques whenappropriateConsider ethics as you developsolutions