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Home » Everyday Leadership, Featured

Who, What, and Why

Submitted by James Higginbotham on September 15, 2009 – 4:11 amNo Comment

Leaders experienced in a particular skill often see the “how” before anything else. This is especially true of creative and “techie” types. That is because we are so focused on our skills and how to solve a problem, we forget to look at the other factors involved.

Here are some questions to ask before diving into a new solution:

Who? – who is impacted by the problem? Knowing who needs the solution is a good part of the problem, as the solution often needs to be tailored to the audience

What? - what exactly is the problem? We often forget that some time needs to be spent fully understanding the proble?m upfront. Otherwise, how can we test the solution and know that it addresses the original problem?

Why? -  why is there  a problem? Is it because a process is failing and just needs to be adjusted? Is it something related to specific people or bad habits that need to be addressed? Or, is this truly a problem that requires a solution to be built?

Before launching your team into a brand new project or direction, stop and ask the simple questions. Spend some time digging into the problem, including the source(s) involved, and determine what the right solution should be.  Don’t lose sight of the problem by getting caught up in the “how” part of the solution. 

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