From the information gathered in the first two phases of the problem solving framework it is now time to start thinking about possible solutions to the identified problem.
In a group situation this stage is often carried out as a brain-storming session, letting each person in the group express their views on possible solutions (or part solutions).
However well prepared we are for problem solving, there is always an element of the unknown.
Although planning and structuring will help make the problem solving process more likely to be successful, good judgement and an element of good luck will ultimately determine whether problem solving was a success.
Of course for the CEO wanting to increase profits there may be many more barriers preventing the goal from being reached.
The CEO needs to attempt to recognise these barriers and remove them or find other ways to achieve the goals of the organisation.If you are hungry then your goal is probably to eat something.If you are the head of an organisation (CEO), then your main goal may be to maximise profits and this main goal may need to be split into numerous sub-goals in order to fulfil the ultimate aim of increasing profits.Following our examples above, if you feel hungry then your goal is to eat.A barrier to this may be that you have no food available - so you take a trip to the supermarket and buy some food, removing the barrier and thus solving the problem.This stage involves: detecting and recognising that there is a problem; identifying the nature of the problem; defining the problem.The first phase of problem solving may sound obvious but often requires more thought and analysis.In order to be effective at problem solving you are likely to need some other key skills, which include: It is worth also considering our own view of what a problem is.We are constantly exposed to opportunities in life, at work, at school and at home.This stage may not be necessary for very simple problems but is essential for problems of a more complex nature.During this stage you will generate a range of possible courses of action, but with little attempt to evaluate them at this stage.