3 Synergistic Problem Solving


3 Synergistic Problem Solving

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3 Synergistic Problem Solving

There is no point focusing on a problem if it will have no bearing on the situation or the real problem.  Now – let’s have a closer look at those problems.

We are problem solvers, so our natural response to problems is diving into solution mode – coming up with strategies to solve the problem.  In fact we often hear people saying don’t come to me with problems, come with solutions – which is fine – but you actually need to spend most of you time defining the problem you are trying to solve – otherwise you end up wasting time on solutions to symptoms – not causes – work-arounds!!

This part in the process requires you to specify the problems in this situation – the things that get in the way of you achieving your goal. And what is really causing the issue. The following topics provide strategies, tools and techniques to assist you to unpack and understand the causes of the problems and issues that you need to fix.

Getting everyone involved in analysing the problem will ensure that it is considered from multiple perspectives so you have a more complete understanding of it.  It also fosters engagement and commitment to the process and the ultimate change.

The following diagram shows the synergistic problem-solving model, which is based on the premise that when groups adopt a constructive interaction style (blue) and their members approach problems in a rational, supportive manner, the interactive efforts of people working together will have a greater impact than the sum of their independent efforts.

In these teams, every individual is able to contribute the most they have to offer.  The team achieves the best decision or solution that is possible given the resources, task skills and knowledge available to it from the individual members of the team.

Synergistic problem solving results in an effective solution – one that is of higher quality and more accepted than any one individual’s solution.

Effective solution = quality x acceptance


Download the detailed description of the Synergistic Problem Solving process.

How will you engage your colleagues in unpacking and analysing the problems?

Synergistic Problem Solving Model


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