Executive and Professional Development
Critical Thinking and Strategic Problem Solving
Organizational success requires leaders with exemplary problem solving skills - leaders who are adept at examining problems and opportunities critically, and implementing solutions that increase competitiveness and improve performance.
This seminar introduces you to a systematic and flexible approach for tackling challenging leadership issues. Drawing on cutting-edge best practices, the program offers a step-by-step process for problem solving, exploring alternatives, and generating highly creative solutions, applicable in any area of your business. Based on Alex Lowy's best-selling business book No Problem, the seminar provides examples, processes and approaches that enable managers to quickly cut to the heart of strategic and organizational decisions.
Participants will receive a copy of Alex Lowy's best-selling business book No Problem.
PRE-SEMINAR PREPARATION: Prior to the course you will receive some readings and a letter from your instructor. We ask that you read the material and come prepared to discuss it.
Receive 14 PDUs towards your PMI® Continuing Certification Requirements.
DATES - 2 Day Seminar
November 16 - 17, 2015
April 25 - 26, 2016
Understanding the Problem Solving Hierarchy
- The three basic levels of business challenge: making decisions, solving problems, managing dilemmas
- The 'Decisions to Dilemmas Model'
Making Effective Strategic Business Decisions
- The three main barriers to strategic problem solving: faulty definition; wrong level of complexity; negative bias
- Following a structured decision process
Structured Problem Solving Techniques
- Solving problems that can be solved
- Using Rational Analysis tools to problem solve
- The art of Creative Envisioning to address underlying issues
Managing Dilemmas: When Problems Can't Be Solved
- Draw on applied dialectical reasoning to resolve,highly complex challenges
- Using the Five-Step Dialectical Solutions Method™ (DSM)
- Step 1: Issues and Challenges
- Step 2: Core Dilemma Definition
- Step 3: Strategic Modeling
- Step 4: Gap Analysis
- Step 5: Resolution Planning
Critical Thinking Skills
- Principles of critical thinking
- Recognize and overcome the eight most common critical thinking errors
- How to effectively frame, explore and reframe strategic issues
Overcoming Organizational Barriers to Success
- Eight typical dilemmas facing leaders
- Navigating internal roadblocks that derail great solutions
What You Will Learn
- Today's best practices in critical thinking, decision making and problem solving
- How to quickly identify the three basic problem levels
- How to effectively define and frame organizational problems requiring solutions
- How to use advanced planning tools to manage highly complex strategic challenges
- How to engage key stakeholders and team members
- How to apply new problem solving skills to your own strategic, organizational and leadership issues
- Gain skills to train others in effective problem solving and decision making
Who Should Attend?
You will benefit from this seminar if you:
- are a senior manager, VP or director
- are a corporate-level manager from any department
- are an operations or administrative officer
- are a project manager who must solve complex projects
- are a sales and marketing team member who must respond to new competitive threats
This program is delivered in partnership with Schulich Executive Education Centre at York University.