Problem Solving Strategies: Solving vs. "Eliminating"


by Brandon Steiner February 11, 2013 0 Comments

The important issues are usually underneath the surface.

Recently my right shoulder’s been bothering me. It starts aching when I make certain movements. And it’s occurred to me that the way I’ve been dealing with it is symbolic of a mistake we all tend to make.

Nowadays, with the internet and cell phones and the rest of it, we’re all about instant gratification.

So when we have a problem, like my achy shoulder, we try to get rid of that problem as soon as possible – rather than looking at the underlying issue. Rather than really trying to solve the problem.

For instance, I’ve been taking anti-inflammatories, I’ve been running off to get massages…but the shoulder issue keeps coming back.

Instead of trying to eliminate it, I should be looking at what might be causing the issue in the first place. Am I sitting in a bad position at work? Do I need a new pillow? Is it something in my exercise routine?

These are the questions I should be asking, so that instead of just getting rid of the problem, I’m making sure it doesn’t happen again. I'm solving it.

It’s the same in our relationships and in our jobs.

If “issues” keep coming up between you and a coworker, maybe there’s a larger, underlying problem. Maybe these day-to-day squabbles are rooted in some bigger issue between you two. Have you tried to address it? Have you even looked for it?

If you’re 40 years old and you’ve never been married, maybe you can’t say: “I haven’t met the right person yet.” Maybe you have met them, and something in you is the real issue. Have you considered that?

The point is, we tend to be superficial when it comes to our "problem solving."  We look at the problems themselves too much. We don't look for their causes enough.

What are some of the recurring problems in your life?

Do you try to solve them by themselves?

Or do you look for the underlying causes?




Brandon Steiner
Brandon Steiner

Author

Brandon Steiner is the founder and chairman of Steiner Sports Marketing and Memorabilia, the largest company of its kind in America. Considered a sports marketing guru, Brandon is a permanent fixture in the media as a regular on ESPN NY Radio 98.7 FM and as host of "The Hook-Up with Brandon Steiner" on YES Network. He has appeared frequently on CNBC, CNN, MSNBC, ESPN, and in newspapers including the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal. The author of The Business Playbook: Leadership Lessons from the World of Sports and You Gotta Have Balls: How a Kid from Brooklyn Started From Scratch, Bought Yankee Stadium, and Created a Sports Empire, Brandon lives in Scarsdale, New York, with his wife, Mara and children Crosby and Nicole.




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