Effective leaders that have undergone a leadership course can map out a realistic action plan to solve management problems. They often anticipate possible obstacles and build upon the people and resources at their disposal. They also make problem-solving a collaborative effort, recognizing that each problem is unique and has different nuances. To become a more effective leader, you must be able to pinpoint the common problems that you might face every day in your team.
Creating consensus around a solution
The word consensus means “overwhelming agreement.” It’s also an outcome of a good-faith effort to meet the needs and interests of all stakeholders. The final proposal must be acceptable to everyone, and someone needs to frame it. Claims, demands and positions are distinct from underlying needs. To create consensus, identify the different types of stakeholders and brainstorm alternatives. Once everyone agrees, discuss each option and find one that can make a shared goal.
Sometimes, the participants of a consensus-building process decide to invite proxy individuals or organizations to speak for their interests. Although most stakeholders will agree to proxy representation, the participants should consider whether it is necessary to include representatives from hard-to-represent stakeholder categories. Having more than one expert present can be a good idea to provide objective advice. In this case, the neutral party will help the groups reach a mutual understanding. Being a mediator during these situations requires skills that can be developed by studying team development.
Use a fishbone diagram
Using a fishbone diagram to solve management issues is an effective way to pinpoint the cause of a problem and dig deeper to find the root cause. As with any management process, this method should be used with care and always accompanied by a thorough analysis. There are many ways to use a fishbone diagram, and you can create a unique version for your organization. Make sure to choose meaningful category names for each item in the fishbone diagram.
A fishbone diagram is a diagram that systematically examines all possible causes of a management problem and groups them to determine the cause of variation. While it applies to every industry, the categories may vary. Toyota, for instance, initially filled in six categories, later adding two more. Ideally, you should first write down your problem. Brainstorming can help you identify the main problem. Use the diagram to prioritize the essential factors in the situation.
For more information on dealing with problems as a manager, read this infographic from Corporate Learning Solutions: