The 6 Jobs of Highly Effective Problem Solvers

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  • @RodKing Great reasoning, Rod. I knew you had good reasons for that. You wrote 'Solution proposed by the Solution Builder inherently generates problems and trade-offs that should be measured and verified'. Great and I appreciate your great clarification, Rod.
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  • @hudali15: Ali, I like your suggestion of 'Solution Verifier' as an alternative name for the problem solving hero that I currently call 'Problem Measurer.'Actually, I see 'Problem Measurer' and 'Solution Verifier' as two sides of the same coin. 'Problem Measurer' has a problem-focus while 'Solution Verifier' focuses on the solution space. In the above diagram, I decided to focus on the problem space primarily because I wanted to present the template of the Six Problem Solving Heroes as a visual platform for problem solving methodologies such as Six Sigma and Lean Startup method. The Problem Measurer corresponds to the 'Measure' tollgate in the DMAIC heuristic of Six Sigma: Define; Measure; Analyze; Improve; Control. To directly present the Six Sigma methodology using the visual platform of Problem Solving Heroes, we would have the following: Problem DEFINER; Problem MEASURER; Problem ANALYZER; Problem IMPROVER; Problem CONTROLLER. Note that I have replaced 'Problem CONTROLLER' with 'Value LEARNER.' This latter change facilitates application of the 6 Problem Solving Heroes to the Lean Startup method which has the Build-Measure-Learn heuristic. Another reason why I focused on the role of Problem Measurer rather than Solution Verifier is to emphasize that the Solution proposed by the Solution Builder inherently generates problems and trade-offs that should be measured and verified. The mindset here is that the prototype of the Solution Builder should be improved rather than considered as a solution that has been validated to be good (enough). For startups, the difference is huge between the mindset of Problem Measurement and the mindset of Solution Verification. I'm reminded of the perspectives of seeing a glass of water as 'half empty' or 'half full.' Startups are usually full of unrealistic optimism; they are prone to seeing the glass completely full of water. Consequently, I believe that a 'half empty' mindset would be more of a critical reminder to them than a 'half full' mindset. In addition, the Problem Measurer and Problem Analyzer heroes set up the stage for the Solution Improver. One last thing ... I'd like to add that, unlike in many problem solving methodologies such as traditional brainstorming which deal with single loop (problem-solution) problem solving, the problem solving cycle of the 6 Problem Solving Heroes reflects double-loop problem solving in a cycle: the first loop is between the Problem Definer and Solution Builder. The second loop is between the Problem Measurer and Problem Analyzer on the one hand and the Solution Improver on the other hand. So, there are two problem-solution phases before the learning phase. I've observed that the world's best inventors, innovators, and problem solvers iteratively use double-loop problem solving in each of the many cycles of a project. Inevitably, the initial solution of a Solution Builder is often based on intuition rather than systematic creative thinking. Thereafter, the initial solution should be improved by measuring and analyzing the customer impact before designing a better solution. I hope that these 'ramblings' clarify my choice or preference for using the term, 'Problem Measurer.'
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  • Rod- great graphics that reflect your six heroes of problem solvers. Yes, send up and down, Send them east or west. Study them day or night. Reveal their secrets or hide them. No matter what they remain faithful and heroes.
    I have a 'tiny' question. After Solution Builder you move to Problem Measurer. Is it the problem of solving? In my mind I would call it Solution Verifier or Solution Revealer. I am sure you have a great reasoning, Rod, behind giving this hero such name.
    Rod, I do not get tired to say how bright your ideas are.
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The 6 Jobs of Highly Effective Problem Solvers

  1. 1. The  6  Jobs  of  Highly  EffecDve  Problem  Solvers   Rapidly  Discover  and  Solve  BUMPs   Problem   Definer   Value   Learner   SoluDon   Builder   Define  Problem   Define/sketch  customer   Make  field  visits;  Network      Observe  anomalies,            pains  &  trade-­‐offs            Ques9on  Red  Ocean                       Learn  What’s  Valued  Explore  in   Build  SoluDon                   What  to  learn/share        space/9me   Set  goals/strategies   Evaluate  (-­‐/+);  Monitor   Brainstorm  specs/propn.   Reflect:  Lesson  Learned   Idealize;  Use  “What  if?”   Tell  stories;  “Pitch”   Analogize;  Experiment   Summarize   Prototype  tool;  Pilot   Object   Improve  SoluDon   Measure  Problem   Resolve  trade-­‐offs   Measure  impacts   Do  mul9level  thinking   Collect  data/info   Transform;  Disrupt   Quan9fy  rela9onships      Role-­‐play;  Simplify   Confirm  channels          Implement  tac9cs   Verify/Validate    Analyze  Problem   Analyze  data/info   Categorize  inputs   Model  processes   Structure/Classify  outputs   Display  cri9cal  thinking   SoluDon   Improver   Problem   Measurer   Problem   Analyzer     #4ROD.  Dr.  Rod  King.  rodkuhnhking@gmail.com  &  h8p://businessmodels.ning.com  &  h8p://twi8er.com/RodKuhnKing  
  2. 2. Rapidly  Discover  and  Solve  BUMPs  of  Portable  Music  Players   The  6  Jobs  of  Highly  EffecDve  Problem  Solvers   Problem   Definer   Value   Learner   SoluDon   Builder   Define  Problem   Define/sketch  customer   Make  field  visits;  Network      Observe  anomalies,            pains  &  trade-­‐offs            Ques9on  Red  Ocean                       Learn  What’s  Valued  Explore  in   Build  SoluDon                   What  to  learn/share        space/9me   Set  goals/strategies   Evaluate  (-­‐/+);  Monitor   Brainstorm  specs/propn.   Reflect:  Lesson  Learned   Listen   Idealize;  Use  “What  if?”   Tell  stories;  “Pitch”   to  Music   Analogize;  Experiment   Summarize   Prototype  tool;  Pilot   Improve  SoluDon   Measure  Problem   Resolve  trade-­‐offs   Measure  impacts   Do  mul9level  thinking   Collect  data/info   Transform;  Disrupt   Quan9fy  rela9onships      Role-­‐play;  Simplify   Confirm  channels          Implement  tac9cs   Verify/Validate    Analyze  Problem   Analyze  data/info   Categorize  inputs   Model  processes   Structure/Classify  outputs   Display  cri9cal  thinking   SoluDon   Improver   Problem   Measurer   Problem   Analyzer     #4ROD.  Dr.  Rod  King.  rodkuhnhking@gmail.com  &  h8p://businessmodels.ning.com  &  h8p://twi8er.com/RodKuhnKing  
  3. 3. The  6  Jobs  of  Highly  EffecDve  Problem  Solvers   Rapidly  Discover  and  Solve  BUMPs   Problem   Definer   Date:  ………………………………....   SoluDon   Builder   Define  Problem   Learn  What’s  Valued   Value   Learner   Improve  SoluDon   Build  SoluDon   Object   Measure  Problem   Problem   Measurer    Analyze  Problem   SoluDon   Improver   Problem   Analyzer     #4ROD.  Dr.  Rod  King.  rodkuhnhking@gmail.com  &  h8p://businessmodels.ning.com  &  h8p://twi8er.com/RodKuhnKing  
  4. 4. The  6  Jobs  of  Highly  EffecDve  Problem  Solvers   Rapidly  Discover  and  Solve  BUMPs   Problem   Definer   Value   Learner   SoluDon   Builder   Problem   Measurer   Object   SoluDon   Improver   Date:  ………………………………....   Problem   Analyzer     #4ROD.  Dr.  Rod  King.  rodkuhnhking@gmail.com  &  h8p://businessmodels.ning.com  &  h8p://twi8er.com/RodKuhnKing  
  5. 5. 6  Problem  Solving  Heroes     I  keep  six  problem  solving  heroes   (they  teach  me  all  I  know  about  rapidly  discovering  and  solving  BUMPs);   Their  names  are   Problem  Definer;  SoluDon  Builder;  Problem  Measurer;   Problem  Analyzer;  SoluDon  Improver;  Value  Learner.   I  send  them  over  land  and  sea,   I  send  them  east  and  west,   I  send  them  north  and  south.   I  send  them  in  zig-­‐zags,   I  send  them  in  endless  circles,   I  send  them  all  over  the  world.   But  a_er  they  have  worked  hard  for  me,   I  give  them  all  a  well  deserved  rest.     (Rod  King’s  adapta9on  of   Rudyard  Kipling’s  classic  poem,  Six  Honest  Serving  Men)    

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