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Most people’s jobs require them to solve problems and identify potential solutions. This session looks at some of the problem solving techniques that can be used to do this. Here, problem solving is concerned with the definition of the issue, and identification of possible solutions/courses of action. Selecting between those possibilities is about decision making and isn’t covered here.


In particular, by completing this Power Hour Session delegates will be able to:


  • Explain what a ‘problem’ is.
  • Define a problem in specific terms, and use different techniques to identify the real issue(s).
  • Explain different techniques that can be used to generate possible solutions, and identify when each technique might be useful.
  • Practice at least one of these techniques.


To get a flavour of the core session, you can download our FREE Key Points Sheet and view the optional PowerPoint Slides in pdf format. Remember that these do not cover the whole sessios and that more detail is provided in the Session Plan and Delegate Workbook.

Problem Solving - PDF Version

  • The 'core' session lasts for an hour, but the extended session is planned to take half a day. The outline is as follows:

    • Introduction and objectives
    • Solve a problem – Group and individual exercises to look at different ways of solving problems, and highlighting that there is often not one right way
    • Understanding Problems – OPTIONAL exercise and group discussion to explore the nature of problems and our attitude towards them
    • Problems and Perception - OPTIONAL group activity to explore different types of problems and categorise them in different ways to highlight that we need different approaches to different types of issues
    • How you currebntly solve problems - OPTIONAL group exercise to explore the current good and poor practice - useful if all delegates are from the same organisation
    • Defining the Problem – Trainer input around the importance of isolating the cause of the problem and root cause analysis.
    • The 5 Whys - Trainer input and group exercise to use the 5 Whys to identify the specific problem that needs to be solved.
    • Other Useful Techniques – Introduction to more problem solving techniques such as Brainstorming, Mind-Mapping, Reversal, Reframing, and Six-Thinking Hats
    • Identifying Possibilities – Trainer input and group exercises to explore creative problem solving techniques, including the uses and difficulties of each method.
    • Put it into Practice - OPTIONAL exercise to put at least one of the techniques discussed into practice
    • Make it work at work – What people will do now to put the learning into practice
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