How to develop Problem-Solving skills

When recruiters interview candidates, one of the soft skills they often look for are problem-solving skills.  If a resume and a strong interview by the job applicant demonstrate an ability to resolve complications in the workplace, the interviewer is likely to see this applicant as a potential asset to their company.

If you do not consider yourself strong in this soft skill, but would like to develop this skill set, there are ways to train yourself in this area.  We offer the following suggestions:

Recognize that a problem exists– This may sound simplistic, but it’s not. To see a problem, you must train yourself to be observant.Notice what’s going on around you for indications problems may exist. Are co-workers happy or grumbling.  Is absenteeism high?  Are sales campaigns not generating the results expected? These may be signs of problems.

Analyze the problem-Once you perceive a problem exists, think about ways to fix it.  Can it be resolved?

Think of solutions– Once you analyze and decide you indeed have a problem, develop a plan to resolve the problem.  Be creative here, think “out of the box” for solutions. List possible solutions.  Then, decide which one makes the most sense and is most logical based on the situation.

Implement your solution-put your plan into action.  Then, verify that your plan worked and if it didn’t, figure out why, and then try something else.  Realize that problem solving sometimes require multiple attempts.  Failure does not mean your efforts are a waste.  You’ve just eliminated one plan that didn’t work. Now you can move on and try the next possible solution.

From The Key Corporate Services Blog Team