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Leaders Letter 38

One Problem Two Solutions Framework 

March 1st 2021.

March 1st 2021.

Dear leaders, pinch punch, it’s the first of the month.

Something that has always stood me in good stead is frameworks. 

Frameworks help guide, shape and develop ideas and importantly, solutions. 

Problems arise every day.
Problems aren’t always straight forward or easy. Especially in framing and attacking them. 

Every business I have worked in or with have had a small number of frameworks that help shape the business. 

Fortunately (or unfortunately) they tend to be spreadsheet-based or out of date PowerPoint templates. 

For every problem, there are multiple solutions but it can be difficult to understand how to present the multiple options. 

However, attempting to show you have understood and know how to address the problem often requires more than one solution.
Creating a shopping list of solutions is rarely the answer.

Time and preciseness are key when you are presenting options to a senior leader especially those who have a c-suite title. 

A framework I stumbled upon a number of years ago was when presented with a particularly challenging problem, was one problem two solutions. I use it regularly and have shared it many times in recent months.

The trick is to frame the problem and then offer the solution you put forward and a second to show you have thought through any potential push backs. 

Like army-style bottom line up front emails, frame the problem, offer the solution and then detail(s). Always lead with the recommended and then offer the back up further down. The more you use this framework, the wider it is adopted and used.

I learnt from Coca Cola and Amazon execs that “flexibility within a framework” really helps with many problems, especially when you are customer-centric and have specific problems to solve for multiple stakeholders. 

So this week try and offer the one problem two solutions framework to your team.

Your one problem, two solutions that could be used in email or in project tool.

Offer the opportunity to show off their workings out and present their recommended solution first and if required ask them to present their second choice.
Being deliberate and presenting the problem with precise communications will always improve problem-solving and personal development.

Have a great week and solve those problems,

Thanks,

Danny Denhard

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