"To implement an effective solution and be transformative, make sure you are clear about the problem you are trying to solve."
What Problem Are You Trying to Solve
What problem are you trying to solve? In this episode, we hear a segment harvested from the audible of Aviv's book, Create New Futures. Aviv uses an anecdotal example of a project manager, Tim, who is worried that his team is not motivated to embrace the company's expanded mission. Aviv explores with Tim the possibility that he is misdiagnosing his team's response and, if that is the case, he will have a difficult time implementing an effective intervention. Aviv frames the risks of developing a displaced analysis and the dangers that lie within this conundrum. He observes that intellectual laziness and lack of curiosity are more often the root causes of displaced analysis. Finally, Aviv discusses diagnostic thinking and poses four questions to Tim in order to help him define and implement a solution to his problem.
Here is a question: Do you prefer to define yourself by what you stand against or by what you stand for?
Listen Here: Episode 46: What Problem Are You Trying to Solve
What We Covered:
00:54 - What problem are you trying to solve?
01:08 - Aviv introduces Tim who is worried his team is not properly motivated
01:46 - Aviv suggests that perhaps Tim is diagnosing his team's response incorrectly
02:00 - Defining displaced analysis
02:22 - The danger in displaced analysis
02:34 - Aviv provides four questions for Tim to reflect on as a leader
03:00 - Aviv identifies the main causes for displaced analysis
04:14 - Has a clear and compelling picture of the future been painted?
04:26 - Has it been communicated clearly that each individual has a personal opportunity to contribute to the future?
05:11 - Have individuals been provided with the tools and capabilities to address the opportunities before them?
05:41 - Has a clear sense of priorities been established?
05:59 - Tim comes to a conclusion based on Aviv's questions and implements a plan of action
06:18 - Aviv's key insight to implementing an effective solution
06:34 - Three final questions
- "Unless you diagnose the problem you are trying to solve correctly, you are unlikely to implement an effective intervention." (02:13)
- "The danger in displaced analysis is that trying to solve the wrong problem, or one that does not exist, will cause you to miss the problem at hand.'" (02:22)
- "Insufficient information is not the main cause for displaced analysis. Laziness and lack of curiosity are more often the reasons people fail to appreciate and analyze their situations correctly." (02:54)
- "When you practice diagnostic thinking and make plausible cause distinctions, you will stand out for the clarity you bring, and for doing work that others prefer to not pick up. Many people find it easier to stay at a superficial level of analysis. It provides them with an alibi for not initiating change, and excuses their failure to create the desired new future." (03:18)
- "Ask yourself, 'Have I painted a clear and compelling picture of the future, one that clearly outlines what success will look like?'" (04:14)
- "Ask yourself, 'Have we provided people with the tools and capabilities to address the opportunities before us?' If they do not feel competently ready, the opportunity becomes a source of anxiety rather than of excitement.'" (05:11)
- "Ask yourself, 'Have we established a clear sense of priorities? Have we clarified what we will de-prioritize, or remove altogether from the current activity map, to make space for the new work?'" (05:41)
- "To implement an effective solution and be transformative, make sure you are clear about the problem you are trying to solve." (06:20)