When we are trying to generate ideas in order to solve a problem, whether through anticonventional thinking, brainstorming or another method, we typically distance ourself slightly from the problem. We look for ideas on how to improve our company’s product, how to deliver better customer service, how to cut costs or alternative business models. In all of these cases, we separate ourselves from the problem and, by so doing, we potentially limit our understanding of the problem. Why not take a different approach and become the problem?
In business and in life, clear and accurate problem definition is an essential prerequisite for effective problem solving. This may sound obvious, or even trite, but this simple truth can be overlooked by those with pressing needs and a bias for action.