Management Development Insights

Actionable articles and insights for busy executives

Category: Decision Making and Problem Solving

Critical Thinking – What Exactly Is It?

critical thinkingMost employers are now concerned with ensuring that staff and new recruits have critical thinking skills. One hears this term frequently yet when you ask managers to explain what they mean by critical thinking, you get a variety of answers ranging from “critical thinking skills are necessary for problem solving”  to some kind of vague ability to “evaluate information more objectively“.  In fact, problem solving skills derive from the ability to think critically so obviously critical thinking is a kind of aggregate or super-set  of several other skills…

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Problem Solving Using the Subconscious Mind

problem solvingHave you noticed how you sometimes get stuck thinking about how to resolve a problem and no amount of thinking produces any result? Then you decide to leave the office and go for a walk in the park and suddenly you get this inspiration about a possible solution. Is this just a random coincidence or is there some explanation of why this happens?…

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Problem Solving – Key Strategies

problem solvingOne of the lessons I learned a long time ago is that when you need to choose or decide a course of action  – like identifying a lecturer for a particular course or deciding what sort of marketing tactic to employ in a given situation – it is always beneficial to have a checklist of available possibilities. For lecturers, having a list of all the  lecturers who have contacted you in the past really helps with quick selection. Similarly, a master list of all the possible marketing tactics readily available for reference is helpful in thinking through the options. So it is with problem solving. You never know when you may need to solve a problem so having a list of key problem solving strategies can make the job easier. Here is a list of key problem solving strategies you can use…

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Decision Making – The Human Element

This is an extract from a brilliant article on the blog of Deepak Chopra.

decision makingThe conventional wisdom – taught at business schools and in government – is that good decisions need more objectivity based on logic and data rather than subjectivity based on the human element. This however goes against the fact that all decisions are essentially human since we do not have any machines making these decisions for us. In fact, history has demonstrated that the greatest decisions always involved a mix of human genius, passion and determination…

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Better Decision Making – A Little Known Secret

Better Decision MakingImagine that you are approaching a traffic light and need to make a decision whether to stop or move full speed ahead. This becomes easier to decide when you are given sufficient information – the light is red, orange or green. But how do you decide if the traffic lights don’t work for some reason. Now you need to process different bits of information about the traffic that’s coming from the left, the right, the pedestrians…

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The Third Door

This is one of those articles you simply have to read. Arthur Rosenfeld,  a Tai Chi Master, provides an amazing insight on how sometime it might be better not to rely on our instinctive and primitive emotions. Based on his article in the Huffington Post Blog

Just before Christmas of 2007, almost exactly a year ago, I steered into a Starbucks drive-thru line for a cup of tea on my way to teach a morning tai chi lesson. There were a few cars in line, and I got in behind them. When my turn came I gave my order at the billboard menu and moved up as far as I could while waiting patiently for the cars in front of me to get through the cashier line. While the South Florida weather would probably would have felt tropical to much of the rest of the country, I was a bit chilled and was looking forward to my hot drink…

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How We Really Make Decisions..

decision making,planning,problem solvingAsk one of your colleagues or a fellow manager or this person trapped inside your body how they make decisions and the answer is usually a considered and sensible one.  “I think through all the available information and facts and look at all the alternatives and possibilities then decide”. Oh yeah? Not likely! The reality is that ninety times out of hundred, we make lazy, uninformed and emotional decisions that are based on the way we think about the world and the people around us…

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