Problem Solving Techniques

Business Problem Solving, Problem Solving TechniquesWhen working in a team, no matter how small or large that team is, you can expect occasional problems with certain projects, employees or co-workers. The important rule in such situations is to stay calm, analyze the problem and find the best solution that can be implemented efficiently and at the least possible cost. Even if you are a freelancer managing your own time and work duties, you may come across similar issues. Here, we will present some of the business problem solving techniques along with a couple of tips and tricks that might help you develop better problem solving management skills.

1. Clarify the problem – define it. Always make sure you understand the exact problem, where it is happening, how, and who is directly and indirectly affected by that problem. Without clearly understanding these factors, you might take a completely wrong approach, causing you to lose both time and money. Understanding the problem should be your top priority when involved in business problem solving situations.
2. Gather the facts to better understand the problem. Do not hesitate to reach out to customers or co-workers or other employees in order to gather more facts and info about the problem you are facing. Put down a list so that you can better organize yourself. Do not rush with conclusions. If it takes a while to gather all the facts, then take your time.
3. Think about possible solutions. Find all available alternatives for solving that problem and examine every possible approach. When determining the best solution, make sure to take all inputs into consideration. How much will that solution cost? How much time will it take? Is it realistic and will it give good results? How will that solution affect your employees or co-workers? What’s the risk?
4. Consult with others about your chosen approach. Sometimes others will spot the things you might not have taken into consideration, which could turn out to be important. Get their opinions and verify that the chosen solution is indeed the best one for you and your company.
5. Develop an execution plan. Are there any shortcuts? Can you handle everything on your own or you want to delegate the execution of your plan? Form the strategy that will cost least with a maximum impact. If you decide to delegate the execution to your co-workers or employees, make sure to properly supervise that process. Leaving some issues and tasks half finished and half unresolved is a bad practice in business problem solving situations. If you are handling the execution of your plan on your own, and you estimate it will take a while, then break it down in steps. Breaking down a large procedure in smaller chunks will help you focus on the goal itself and execute your plan in a timely manner.
6. Explain your decision and plan to your coworkers and employees. Make sure everyone is on board with your decision and, if needed, explain the implementation of your solution and state the expected goals and results. Again, follow up with the person in charge of your plan execution and monitor the results.
7. Was the problem properly solved? Check on results and analyze. Examine the procedures taken as well as the overall costs in order to determine whether or not the right solution was applied for that specific problem. If a similar problem occurs in the future, will you involve the same people in your plan execution? Have you learned anything from this problem and are there any options to prevent it from happening again?

Again, as many times said, there are no universal solutions and answers that can be applied in just any given situation. Some problems may require you to adjust the steps, spend more time or resources on resolving those issues, or even hire professionals with problem solving management skills to help you determine specific problems, especially in large companies.

Karin Jakovljevic

About the author

Karin Jakovljevic

Karin Jakovljevic is the head of marketing at Ximble, a powerful, cloud-based workforce management system, simplifying employee scheduling and time tracking for retailers, restaurants and small businesses.

Success Stories

Menchie’s

It was hard to keep Menchie’s young and mostly part-time staff informed about shift changes, until Menchie’s discovered Ximble’s easy-to-use smartphone app.

Fast Fix

Ximble’s easy-to-use scheduling tool allows Fast Fix employees to remotely access shift information, and integrates with their Point of Sale and Payroll systems.

Spry Health

When spreadsheets became too complicated, Spry Health sought simple, cost-effective timekeeping software so they could concentrate on growing their business.

Spirited Gifts

Since switching to Ximble, Spirited Gift no longer struggle with employees turning up at the wrong time, for the wrong shifts.

Re-bath of South Florida

Re-bath required timekeeping software that was simple, flexible, and that could grow with their business.

Vastrm

When they outgrew their own internal system, Vastrm chose Ximble to track their part-time and contracted employees, both in and out of the office.

Excellence Martial Arts

All that Excellence Martial Arts were looking for was basic employee timetracking, with payroll reporting. Ximble’s cost-effective software was the ideal solution.

Collab Inc

Manual timesheets were a poor fit for Collab, and with no easy to feed the data into Gusto they began looking for a viable solution to their scheduling and time tracking headaches.

Carolina Moves

Follow Carolina Moves’ journey as they transitioned from using an archaic time tracking and data entry methods to using something that could optimize their processes and integrate with Gusto.

Bearings Bike Shop

Read how inaccurate time keeping methods forced Bearing Bike Shop to approximate working hours leading to significant losses over the year, until implementing Ximble.

Mermaid Life Chameleon

Needing a simplistic solution to their scheduling and time tracking needs, Mermaid Life didn’t want a solution that would over deliver and overcharge for what they required.

Krein Knives

Outgrowing spreadsheets, Krein Knives now needed a time tracking solution that could accurately track irregular working hours and automate as much of the administrative process as possible.

Garmentory

Looking for automation and simplicity, Garmentory turned towards Ximble in hopes of resolving their time tracking woes.

Novvia

With their eyes set on rapid growth, Novvia needed to implement a scheduling solution that could effectively scale as the business grew while integrating with the existing payroll system.

Story2

Discover how Story2 resolved their time tracking and payroll problems by implementing Ximble into their arsenal of tools and integrating it with their payroll platform, Gusto.

CareCentric Pty Ltd

Spreadsheets lacked the scalability and flexibility that CareCentric Pty Ltd needed as they grew and needed something that would be responsive to their changing needs.

Bou Cou Dancewear

Struggling with varying availability of staff, scheduling for multiple store fronts and managing payroll, Bou Cou Danceware needed a solution to their scheduling and time tracking needs.

Best Pets Veterinary Hospital

Constantly fighting wasted time from data entry errors, outdated methods of scheduling and time tracking were taking their toll. Discover how Ximble helps them overcome their challenges.

Hook SEO

Read how Ximble helped Hook SEO with their time tracking and scheduling problem when they noticed too much time was being wasted on data entry.

National Strategic

After a rapid increase of employees, National Strategic’s dependence on spreadsheets for time tracking was no longer viable. Find out how Ximble solved their problems.

miR Diagnostics

Find out how miR Diagnostics implemented Ximble’s time tracking features for their employees and how it improved their payroll operations through the Gusto integration.

Followell Fotography

Effective time tracking in and out of the office and Gusto integration was important for this photography company. Find out how Ximble stepped up to meet the challenge.

CARP

Ximble provided an inexpensive and user friendly solution to CARP’s time tracking and Gusto integration needs. Find what won them over and how it bettered their operations.

iLoveKickboxing

Discover how the time tracking and extensive feature of Ximble helped improve ILKB’s operations with the Gusto integrations and ximbleChat platform without breaking the bank.

Techpoint1

A tech savvy company that integrates technology into your offices and homes. With their skill and knowledge, they turn your ideas into reality.

Wise Owl Animal Hospital

An animal hospital that combines traditional and modern medicine to provide superior animal care. They raise awareness and provide advice on excellent pet care.

Armstrong Property Management

A property management consulting that specializes in home real-estate. They offer an abundance of services to property owners.

Parsaco

A restaurant consulting company that helps you take your business to the next level. With the best advisors, they can help you expand your business.

Liquid Consulting

A consulting company that strives to become your food processing partner. Comprised of skilled technicians and employees to improve your business.

Alta Animal Hospital

Find out how Alta Animal Hospital do away with printed shift calendars and move to a 100% mobile platform.

Montefiore

Read how Ximble helps Montefiore eliminate the need for multiple spreadsheets and calendars.

Rudy’s Pub & Grill

By utilizing Ximble, Rudy’s Pub & Grill has seen a 60% decrease in missed shift from schedule confusion.

TouchSupport

Learn how TouchSupport was able to manage employees at multiple locations with ease and save 8 hours a week by using Ximble.

Try Ximble for 14 days free

No credit card required. Cancel any time.