Three Questions for Adaptable Problem Solvers

I was thinking about how I solve problems, and I realized that I often ask three questions. I thought I would share them with you.

First question:

What’s the next step?

I use this a lot on myself (grin), and in coaching. This question is useful when you think you’re stuck. You can almost always take one more step. I also use it when I’m exhausted and say, “Just one more step.”

Second question:

 What else could I do?

This often prompts me to use the Rule of Three to generate some options. How else can I see this problem, to turn it sideways, upside down, or some other way?

Third question is about going meta:

If I knew what the answer was, what would it be?

 That gets me thinking in some other direction, differently than the Rule of Three.

Problem solving is often non-linear. I use these tools often. I thought you might like them to help break the constraints of typical problem solving.

3 thoughts on “Three Questions for Adaptable Problem Solvers

  1. Pingback: Five Blogs – 3 January 2014 | 5blogs

  2. Angie

    GOOD STUFF!!

    I frequently ask: What do we know? This helps us separate the wheat from the chaff, facts from assumptions.
    It also tells us what we don’t know, and how to fill in the gaps.

    I also ask: Where do we need to be? If we are going to take one more step, I want it to be in the right direction!!

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