When it comes to problem solving, some prefer the act fast, go-with-your-gut approach. But a new BusinessWeek report says that this leap-into-action model should be avoided for issues outside your skill set and suggests following a three-pronged method instead.
Photo by nerovivo.
BusinessWeek calls these kinds of circumstances adaptive challenges since the solution is unknown at the problem's onset and is mostly likely to be complex. And while the article's focus is on solving work-related problems, we think the approach can be applied to other areas of your life as well.
Specifically, the magazine outlines three steps—observe, interpret and intervene—and provides explanations of each.
Reflecting in the midst of action—what we call moving off the dance floor and getting on the balcony—is a powerful way to do this. It enables you to gain some distance, watch yourself as well as others while you are in the action, and see patterns that are hard to observe if you're stuck at the ground level, where the action is swirling around you.
Hit up the full post for a complete breakdown of each step or, if you're feeling adventurous, let decision-making applications like previously mentioned Let Simon Decide or Hunch do some of the decision-making legwork for you.
Making Decisions Outside Your Repertoire [BusinessWeek]