Problem Solving Skills
is a 25-item assessment providing participants with an easy-to-use, 5-step problem-solving process. By using this process, individuals can identify and monitor their skill level at each step.
With the wide range of problems you face at work, it’s the small, everyday problems - the ones that need quick but effective solutions - that really take a chunk out of your day. So how do you solve these problems and still leave time for the more complex issues at hand?
Problem Solved! is a 25-item assessment providing participants with an easy-to-use, 5-step problem-solving process. By using this process, individuals can identify and monitor their skill level at each step.
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Learn an effective way to solve everyday problems.
Identify strengths and weaknesses at each step of the process.
Create action plans for improvement.
Problem Solved! is based on a process of 5 steps (The Problem Solved! Process). The instrument takes the perspective that a systematic method of problem solving followed and practiced on a regular basis yields rapid and efficient problem solving (Hesselberth, 1994). Drawing on the work of Sternberg (1986) and Klubnik & Greenwood (1994), the Problem Solved! Process is based on the most common and most sensible steps.
How It Works
With a recent problem in mind, participants respond to 25 behavior-related statements, indicating the extent to which they practiced the behavior. By scoring and charting results, they create a visual depiction of their comfort level with each of the 5 problem-solving steps. Participants learn about the 5-step Problem Solved! Process, discuss everyday problem solving, apply the Problem Solved! Process to a current problem, and make action plans.
Uses for Problem Solved!
Problem Solved! is best used with participants who require a quick problem-solving method. Other instruments (e.g., the Force Field Problem Solving Model) can be used for working with in-depth problems. Effective when used as a stand-alone tool as well as part of a larger program, the Problem Solved! is particularly helpful for individuals or groups who:
Face repeated short-term problems.
Must engage in problem solving daily or weekly.
Need to solve problems within a short period of time (e.g., one hour).
Need a standard method for problem solving that can be applied universally.
Tend to spend too long solving everyday problems. Learn more at HRDQ. Click here to visit HRDQ
Research shows that one of the critical skills separating good leaders from great leaders is the conscious use of intuition in daily decision making. Great leaders actively call on their intuition to enhance decision making, whereas less effective leaders tend to rely too heavily on traditional approaches.
Give your participants a key competitive advantage with the Intuitive Decision Making Profile (IDMP). This assessment helps individuals learn to make complex decisions by putting their "database" of real-world knowledge and experience to work using their intuition.
Discover the extent to which they already utilize their intuition.
Determine when it is appropriate to use intuition in decision making.
Learn to identify and overcome emotional and cognitive "blocks".
Enhance the conscious use of intuitive decision making.
How It Works:
Participants complete the 40-item inventory that examines the extent to which they incorporate intuition when making business-related decisions. They then review background information about intuitive decision making to understand its importance. Next, participants score their assessments, chart their results to learn which areas need focus, complete the “When to Use Intuition” table, discuss the Intuitive Processing Mode, and complete the “Plan for Enhancing Intuition.”
Uses for the Intuitive Decision Making Profile:
The IDMP is an effective tool to develop versatility in decision making and increase personal effectiveness in the workplace. Building intuitive decision making is particularly helpful in situations characterized by complex underlying relationships, such as mergers, reorganizations, and strategy formulation.
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25 Problem-Solving & Decision-Making Activities provides the tools to enhance these skills, using a variety of self-analysis assessments, survey instruments, structured experiences, and teaching resources.
Problem solving and decision making are two of the most challenging and complex, yet vitally important skills required of individuals and teams in organizations. From well-known authors Dave Francis and Mike Woodcock, 25 Problem-Solving & Decision-Making Activities provides the tools to enhance these skills, using a variety of self-analysis assessments, survey instruments, structured experiences, and teaching resources.
Rooted in experiential principles and linked to real-world situations, the activity collection is based upon a systematic, 8-step method of problem solving and decision making known as TOSIDPAR:
Reviewing to improve
Uses for 25 Problem-Solving & Decision-Making Activities:
The activities can be run independently or in a sequence, but are most beneficial as part of a more comprehensive training program.
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The Problem Solving Style Inventory (PSSI) ia a 30-item instrument, which allows individuals to gain insight on their dominant and supportive styles of solving problems and making decisions in their work units or teams as well as receive feedback from others.
Do your managers and supervisors resist involving their employees in the problem-solving process — even when a participative approach is the most appropriate? Help them to learn whether their problem-solving and decision-making preferences work to their benefit or their detriment with the Problem Solving Style Inventory.
This 30-item instrument allows individuals to gain insight on their dominant and supportive styles of solving problems and making decisions in their work units or teams as well as receive feedback from others.
Understand which problem-solving and decision-making style one is predisposed to use or ignore.
Determine whether one’s use of the 5 styles is appropriate for one’s work groups or teams.
Identify the important factors to consider when choosing a style to solve a problem or make a decision.
Master the ability to assess one’s work group and choose the style that fits be.
Problem Solving Style Inventory is based on the Problem Solving Styles Model. This model illustrates the various styles available to a supervisor or manager for solving problems and making decisions. A manager’s problem-solving or decision-making behavior can be plotted along 2 axes:
Ego-Centered Behavior: The extent to which a manager attempts to solve all problems or make all decisions by him/herself with little or no input from others.
Other-Centered Behavior: The extent to which a manager includes other people in the problem-solving or decision-making process.
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The degree to which a manager uses these 2 behaviors to solve problems and make decisions gives rise to the 5 styles shown in the model. All 5 styles are useful managerial approaches to solving problems and making decisions in certain situations.
How It Works
The inventory presents 30 pairs of statements that describe how people go about solving problems and making decisions. Individuals choose the statement that is most characteristic of their approach. By scoring and charting results, participants generate an overall Problem-Solving/Decision-Making Style Preference Profile, with sub scores indicating one’s usage level of each of the 5 styles. Feedback scores provide comparison data. Participants learn about the styles, the 4 key factors in choosing a style, analyze the possible overuse or underuse of each style, and make action plans.
Uses for the Problem Solving Style Inventory
The Problem Solving Style Inventory assessment and Feedback Forms are effective when used together as a stand-alone tool as well as part of a larger program. The Problem Solving Style Inventory can be used in a variety of ways, including:
As part of a basic supervisory or management training program
As part of a leadership or team leader training program
As a development tool used by a higher-level manager to coach lower-level managers or supervisors in when and how to ask for participation in problem solving and decision making
As an individual self-assessment tool to help a manager identify his/her own use of the 5 problem-solving and decision-making styles as seen through the manager’s eyes and eyes of his/her employees.
As a diagnostic tool with dysfunctional teams or work units to assess whether the team leader’s or manager’s over-use or under-use of any of the 5 styles might be a contributing factor to the ineffectiveness of the team or work unit.
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The Decision-Making Style Inventory is an easy way to assess decision-making style. Individuals identify a personal preference for one of four styles, learn the strengths and weaknesses of each style, and understand how to communicate successfully with people who have different decision-making styles.
The Decision-Making Style Inventory is an assessment for management development training. It identifies one’s preference for one of four decision-making styles and then helps individuals learn how to use their style to communicate most effectively with others.
Recent research into decision making suggests that the most effective leaders are those who are able to adapt their decision-making style over time as their roles and responsibilities change.
The Decision-Making Style Inventory is a proven, easy-to-understand way to assess decision-making style. It identifies a personal preference for one of four styles: Systematic-Internal, Systematic-External, Spontaneous-Internal, or Spontaneous-External. What makes The Decision-Making Style Inventory different is that it doesn’t measure who is smart or dumb, right or wrong. Rather, it’s about how individuals differ in the way they gather information, organize, and then process it.
The assessment is a powerful tool that has many applications, including leadership training, coaching, and performance appraisals.
Define the four primary decision-making styles.
Identify one's preferred style of decision making.
Understand the strengths and liabilities of each style.
Learn how to develop the ability to flex one's decision-making style.
Theory and Development
Detailed research shows that success or failure with executive managers is in large part a function of their ability to change their decision-making styles as they progress in their careers. The Decision-Making Style Inventory provides individuals with an understanding of four unique and empirically validated decision-making styles that emerged from hundreds of interviews with people facing career choice decisions. The styles complement most traditional organization development styles such as the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, the Campbell Leadership Descriptor, and the Social Styles Profile.
The assessment approaches decision-making style on a two dimensional scale that includes two structural styles and two processing styles. Structural style refers to how a person seeks, organizes, and weighs information. A person’s structural style can be either Systematic or Spontaneous. Processing style refers to how people make sense of information. A person’s processing style can be either Internal or External.
Four very different decision-making styles result when the two dimensions are combined:
Uses for the Assessment
The Decision-Making Style Inventory can be used as a self-study tool, a standalone assessment, or as part of a larger training initiative.
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What Would You Do? A Game of Ethical and Moral Dilemma
Explore the concepts of teamwork and ethical decision making with What Would You Do?, an interactive game that uses eight moral dilemmas to teach these concepts and illustrate the impact that one’s decisions have on teams and the organization.
What Would You Do? is a management development training game on ethical and moral decision making. The training simulation uses dilemma scenarios to teach the concept of decision making and illustrate the impact unethical decisions can have on teams and organizations.
In today’s fast-paced, turbulent world, the pressure to succeed is on the rise. And when society around us focuses more on reaching an end result than the way the goal is achieved, the urge to be less than honest can sometimes fall into the mix. Watching others cheat or behave unethically can have a negative impact on groups, teams, and organizations.
What Would You Do? is an interactive game that teaches the benefits of acting ethically in the business world. It is an excellent teaching method because individuals get to experience the consequences their decisions and actions can have on teams and the organization.
The game presents eight decision-making scenarios that force participants to make difficult ethical decisions. Players have to decide whether to take a collaborative or competitive strategy, and each challenge increases in difficulty.
Explore the opposing but related concepts of collaboration and competition.
Learn how to make better choices under pressure.
Understand the importance of trust – and how it can be lost.
Show individuals what it takes to work in a partnership to achieve the best results.
How It Works:
What Would You Do? contains eight decision-making scenarios. For each scenario, players have to decide whether to take a collaborative or competitive road, scoring points for each of several rounds. Points are based on how an individual’s choice compares with those of the other players in the group. At the end of the game, players compare their decisions with the other players.
The first scenario mirrors the original Prisoner’s Dilemma—two prisoners are captured and brought in for questioning. Each has to decide whether to collaborate (which results in a lighter sentence) or save their own skin (which results in no punishment for one prisoner, and a heavy sentence for the other). Each of the next seven scenarios introduces additional problems that turn up the heat and force the participants to make increasingly difficult ethical decisions.
The Facilitator Guide contains everything needed to introduce and administer the game, including background information about the Prisoner’s Dilemma, an overview of the game, facilitator processing notes, debriefing questions, and suggested learning exercises. The Participant Workbook contains the eight decision-making scenarios, and includes scoring and response charts, a score sheet, and discussion and learning application pages.
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Rocket: The Project Management Game
In today’s streamlined organizations, project management is no longer the just domain of the specialist. Now just about everyone is required to play the project manager role. At the same time, this growing need doesn’t necessarily require certifications, Gantt charts, or the Critical Path Method. Instead, what’s really needed is a basic, solid skill set that can be applied to everyday work.
Here’s the training solution that will provide just the right amount of insight. New from subject matter expert Lou Russell, Rocket: The Project Management Game, a competitive team simulation that emphasizes simple, fast, and flexible techniques for ensuring project success.
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What makes Rocket such an effective learning experience is the combination of an actual hands-on team challenge and Russell’s four-step Dare to Properly Manage Resources model. Through game play, participants learn very quickly the importance of each phase, from planning to completion as well as the need to practice what’s referred to as flexible structure.
Learning Outcomes: ,br>
Experience firsthand the skills required to manage projects effectively.
Understand the various challenges of project management.
Realize how to leverage personal strengths to improve project communication.
Learn how to apply the DARE model of project management.How it Works
At the heart of the game is a construction project – you guess it, a rocket! Project teams are faced with the challenge of building to exact specifications, given only limited knowledge and resources – and they’re expected to complete the project both on budget and on time. While on the surface, it may seem like a somewhat simple task, tension and pressure grow as information is revealed and team dynamics emerge.
The Rocket Game Kit includes everything you need to train up to 16 players at one time. All parts are reusable.
To learn a basic project management process
Rocket is based on the global industry standard, Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK), and it supports project management as defined by the American Society of Training and Development’s Certified Professional in Learning and Performance (CPLP).
Lou Russell is president and CEO of Russell Martin & Associates. She is the author of The Accelerated Learning Fieldbook, Project Management for Trainers, IT Leadership Alchemy, Leadership Training, and 10 Steps to Successful Project Management. She is a frequent contributor to Computer World, Cutter Executive Reports, and Network World, among others, and publishes the monthly Learning Flash electronic newsletter.
A popular speaker, Lou addresses national and international conferences such as the Project Management Institute, Project World, and LotuSphere. She holds a computer science degree from Purdue University, where she taught database and programming classes, and a Masters in Instructional Technology from Indiana University.
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What’s the #1 skill executives look for in their employees? Critical thinking. It’s not about criticizing others—it’s about understanding the problem, evaluating the evidence, and making logical and thoughtful decisions. Critical Thinking Skills is a classroom training program, e-learning program, and e-book full of tips, techniques, and thought exercises that help to develop critical thinking skills.
What’s the #1 skill executives look for in their employees? Critical thinking. It’s not about criticizing others—it’s about understanding the problem, evaluating the evidence, and making logical and thoughtful decisions. It’s a skill that can help your organization find smart solutions to tricky problems, avoid emotional thinking and mistakes, and work together more efficiently. Critical Thinking Skills is a training solution that provides individuals with tips, techniques, and thought exercises that help to develop critical thinking skills.
Available as a classroom training program, e-learning program, and e-book, Critical Thinking is part of the Reproducible Training Library, a full suite of unlimited-use content that’s downloadable, customizable, and reproducible:
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