Problem Definition is a deceptively simple task – what at first seems to be the problem is often merely a symptom of a deeper problem. This tool works to both open a problem up – presenting it in a way that can be examined from a number of angles.
This is particularly effective when trying to focus a team of people on the key problems at hand. This tool has been designed to structure the analysis of a particular problem in a way that makes good use of your time.
It introduces a small set of key criteria by which an issue can be articulated and assessed, which makes the activity highly efficient.
The key aim here is to capture, compare and discuss different viewpoints on the problem. You can then review the notes and discuss with your team members whether you are making the same assumptions, and whether you are framing things in the same way.
For instance, working with service users, staff or volunteers may provide a slightly different angle to the tool than when working with managers or entrepreneurs.
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