Solving the problem right requires a right understanding of the problem.

by | Feb 25, 2013 | Consulting

For those who track the Consulting area of this blog, this is another article addressing good management. I love the quote at the article outset from Einstein: laying out the priorities that understanding a problem correctly is foundational to solving it correctly. Read at least the partial article here:


Are You Solving the Right Problem?

Harvard Business Review

by Dwayne Spradlin

“If I were given one hour to save the planet, I would spend 59 minutes defining the problem and one minute resolving it,” Albert Einstein said.

Those were wise words, but from what I have observed, most organizations don’t heed them when tackling innovation projects. Indeed, when developing new products, processes, or even businesses, most companies aren’t sufficiently rigorous in defining the problems they’re attempting to solve and articulating why those issues are important. Without that rigor, organizations miss opportunities, waste resources, and end up pursuing innovation initiatives that aren’t aligned with their strategies. How many times have you seen a project go down one path only to realize in hindsight that it should have gone down another? How many times have you seen an innovation program deliver a seemingly breakthrough result only to find that it can’t be implemented or it addresses the wrong problem? Many organizations need to become better at asking the right questions so that they tackle the right problems. (More)


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