PROBLEM SOLVING APPLICATION
A useful tool for analyzing and solving problems in every industry and occupation
Where is this tool useful
Learn how to break down a complex problem and define it in terms of smaller, realistic and achievable goals. It is difficult to get what you want if you don't know what you want, or whether it is realistic and achievable, or how to get it. Look at our section on reasonable needs, wants and potential. How do you contribute to the development of an economically viable, ecologically sustainable and socially just civilization? How do you help satisfy the reasonable needs, wants and potential of others? What can you reasonably expect from others if you do not contribute by way of mutual service? Why should you enjoy the benefits of a modern, technologically advanced society if you have nothing to offer? What do you want? Is it reasonable, realistic and achievable? What is in the way? Why? Are other people's goals and agendas in the way? Are their needs or wants reasonable? Define or modify your goals or desired outcomes. Examine impediments and probable causes. Explore possible solutions. List the actions and resources required to implement the most relevant solutions.
Marriage and partnerships
What are your shared goals? What outcomes do you really want? Are your current agendas similar? Are your priorities the same? Are your personal needs, wants and potential being met? Are your partner's reasonable needs, wants and potential being met? Do you know the current needs and wants of your partner? What do you do, jointly or severally, to satisfy the reasonably needs, wants and potential of others? How does your partnership contribute to the development of an economically viable, ecologically sustainable and socially just civilization? Is the contribution of each equitable and are the returns equitable?
Family or Group
Do you belong to a family that provides affection, safety, protection and mutual help? Does your family provide a safe, nurturing home environment and affection for all its members? Do all members of the family contribute to the household chores and well-being of each member? Does each member of the family receive basic social training and learn appropriate attitudes, value and beliefs, consistent with the human conduct required for happy family and an economically viable, ecologically sustainable and socially just civilization? Does each member of the family understand that their own prosperity and happiness can only come about in a modern, technologically advanced civilization, if they want any of its conveniences; and that civilization requires the division of labour and mutual service? Does each member of the family have an adequate formal education and marketable skills to help satisfy the reasonable needs, wants and potential of others? Why not? What are the impediments and threats? What does each member of the family want? Are their wants reasonable, realistic and achievable? What are the impediments to what they want? What are the causes of those impediments? What are the potential solutions? What actions and resources are required?
What products or services does your business or organization provide? Do they contribute to the economic viability and ecological sustainability of your target markets? What human needs, wants or potential do they satisfy? What do you and your shareholders reasonably want? What do your customers reasonably want? What do your employees reasonably want? Do you and your shareholders, customers and employees understand their respective social responsibilities in developing an economically viable, ecologically sustainable and society just civilization? How big is the market for your products or services? What market share do you want to satisfy? How can you do it better? Are your products as good or better than the competition in your target market? Are your production methods efficient? Do your promotion efforts result in adequate sales? Is your business well located with respect to your target market? Are you visible and well regarded? Are your cost of goods too high? Are your prices appropriate? Is your gross profit adequate? Are your expenses reasonable? Is your net profit adequate? Is your debt level too high? Do you have enough working capital? Are your debtors under control? Is your cash flow adequate? Are your accounting methods adequate? Do you know and satisfy all your legal obligations? What are your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. What are the goals, strategies, strengths and weaknesses of your competitors. Why? What might you do about it? How do you choose the best courses of action?
At the classroom coalface PSA is an execellent tool for Problem Based Learning (PBL), teaching both an effective problem solving technique and a collaborative approach to real life problem solving. It is an excllent tool for teaching Ends and Means Analysis and Root Cause Analysis as part of the problem solving process. PSA also has its uses in the administrative side of education. How does one define the purpose of education and what strategies are required to pursue, reduce impediments and achieve that purpose. What industries, professions, occupations, knowledge, skills, abilities, attitudes, values, beliefs and human conduct are required to achieve an economically viable, ecologically sustainable and socially just society that can satisfy the reasonable needs, wants and potential of its people in perpetuity, without depleting the natural resources and amenities available for future generations? What curricula are required at what ages in order to achieve appropriate educational goals? What are the impediments and threats? Does every politician, public servant, community, teacher, parent and student understand what is required of them? What changes are required to address institutional and community impediments to appropriate educational outcomes for all students? How can they be implemented?
What outcomes would you like to observe? What do you want to prove? What are the impediments? What benefits can be derived from the hypothesis? What needs, wants or potential might it satisfy? How does it fit with the rest of the body of science? How can it be tested? What are the weaknesses? How might peers criticize or disprove the hypothesis? What are the best alternative explanations? What are their weaknesses?
What product or system do you want? What must it do, or do better? What is it not doing properly? What are the impediments or threats? What are the probable causes? What are the possible solutions? What actions and resources are required? PSA is a handy tool for performing Ends and Means Analysis, to determine the best means to achieve an end goal; and Root Cause Analysis to discover the real causes and most effective level at which to resolve a problem.
What is required to achieve an economically viable, ecologically sustainable and socially just society within a broader international civilization? Does the average citizen know what is required and why? Does it matter? Can it be achieved without war and population reduction? Is the domestic population sustainable? Is the global population sustainable? If not, what is being done to prepare for the inevitable? What industries, services and skills are necessary for national and economic security? Are they economically viable and sustainable? What infrastructure is required? What attitudes, values, beliefs and conduct are required? What are the impediments and threats? Who are the competitors? Who are the allies and trading partners? Who are the potential enemies? What are the consequences of failure?
Is an economically viable, ecologically sustainable and socially just civilization possible without war over limited natural resources and to reduce the number of competing consumers and waste producers? Is the domestic population sustainable? Is the global population sustainable? Is the population of regional neighbors sustainable? What territory or resources might be the target for an an enemy or competitor? Can those resources be adequately defended? Are the weapons systems, alliances and strategies in place? Can an enemy or competitor's needs be satisfied by trade rather than conflict? Can alliances, treaties or trade dependencies result in involvement in an unwanted war? In the event of a world war developing from a regional conflict because of international treaties, alliances or trade dependencies, how likely is it that leaders will escalate the conflict to from military targets to target populations of competing consumers or controllers of desirable territory or resources when the opportunity arises?
Copyright (c) 2000 - 2013 Problem Solving Pty Ltd