A solution is what most people want. Often our most complex workforce problems go unsolved because if they were easily solved, then they wouldn’t really be a problem would they?
Problem solving can be fun, especially when it is just difficult enough to be stimulating but not so challenging that you get frustrated.
Unfortunately sometimes the problems become so difficult that we get frustrated, we might feel like giving up, or we might have to dig deeper to discover additional knowledge or gain additional expertise.
Many of our most challenging problems cannot be solved with a one size fits all approach. We would often like to believe that they can, we often approach them like they can, but then sometimes reality sets in and we come up noticeably short.
One solution might be to triangulate your approach.
The idea of triangulation to solve problems could have several different meanings, but triangulation by definition typically refers to the idea of having two or more pieces of information, and then using that information to calculate the information you are missing. I believe our GPS and navigation systems use this or a similar methodology with satellites and ground position.
How is this idea connected with solving problems in the workplace?
Setting aside design and engineering challenges which likely already involve the use of complex mathematical calculations to solve problems, we might try to combine several known approaches that develop data that would allow us to make more informed choices or predictions for probable outcomes.
By doing this we have the opportunity to validate our information and potentially understand the most probable fix.
How does it work?
Lets assume for a moment that we have a number of choices for determining why employee turnover ratios are high. We could survey employees, we could conduct individual interviews, or we could use focus groups and perhaps many other variations of this type of work to collect data in an attempt to understand solutions for reducing turnover.
In most cases, largely because of time and resources, an organization would choose only one method or a single approach. However, if we would choose two or more well proven approaches (a sort of double check) the information might be considered more valid and reliable.
Doing this means you’ve triangulated your approach with two or more pieces of data that will point to a solution.
Triangulating your approach isn’t the easiest and it doesn’t come with the lowest initial cost, but the long-term benefits could easily overshadow the short-term costs.
What do you think, should you triangulate your approach?
Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is a four-time author and some of his work includes, Forgotten Respect, Navigating A Multigenerational Workforce and Pivot and Accelerate, The Next Move Is Yours! Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.