Problem Solving Skills Training Course Material


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Success starts with great content

Amazing training courses on problem-solving skills start with meeting the needs of your audience.

If you don’t know what your audience struggles with, how can you help them?

And, if you don’t have the content needed, how can you present a training course to them?

Not everyone has the time to develop a training course from scratch.

That’s why we do a lot of the heavy lifting for you.

Whether you are a corporate trainer or business manager, you’ll need to present this training course. You get our knowledge, experience, and advice. You get the Powerpoint presentation slide decks, instructor manuals, and participant manuals that you’ll need.

Let’s get started.

What you’ll get

  • 26-page facilitator manual.
  • 76-page participant manual.
  • 30 powerpoint slides.
  • Practical exercises.
  • Further reading.
  • Course evaluation form.
  • Action plan.

Learning objectives

At the end of this training course your participants will be able to:

  • Define problem-solving.
  • Identify different types of problems.
  • Apply ten techniques.
  • Put in place two effective planning techniques.
  • Apply a seven-step model.
  • Understand why problem-solving can sometimes fail.
  • Determine what methods are best.

Course overview

People solve problems every day but are they getting maximum value from these efforts.

This course will help your audience to better understand how to use problem-solving techniques. And, how to drive more value for their organizations.

This course will guide your audience on what they need to do, how they can employ various techniques, what a problem-solving process is, and how to learn from past failures.

The course is for people serious about developing their problem-solving skills, and who are ready to bring their learning to the next level.

Course outline

Below, we break down how you can present the 7 key sections of this training course.

1. An introduction to project management skills

It’s amazing what problems you can solve when you really put in the effort.

And, if you’ve tried any of the techniques covered in this course, you’ll know what we mean.

Use the content provided to:

  • Share that problems should be seen as a deviation from acceptable performance. For your audience, this concept of deviation may seem, at first, a little challenging to understand. Reassure them that this concept is straightforward. To illustrate, there can be a gap between what performance is happening and what performance is desired.
  • Discuss that the purpose of problem-solving is to close this performance gap, wherever possible.
  • Explore what is a problem.
  • Discuss why we need to solve problems.
  • Encourage participants to use reflection while solving problems.

2. Focus on problem-solving techniques

Few things are as challenging as having a problem and not knowing where to start: your mind is puzzled, frustration is rising, brain-ache is setting in, and it seems that there is no hope in sight.

Your audience has been in this position too.

Use the content to discuss the following ten problem-solving techniques:

  1. Brainstorming.
  2. TPN Analysis.
  3. Matrix Analysis.
  4. Paired Comparisons.
  5. Team Purpose Analysis.
  6. The Cause & Effect Diagram.
  7. SWOT Analysis.
  8. The 5 Ws.
  9. The 5 Whys.
  10. The Six Thinking Hats.

A good tip is to share your own perspectives on problem-solving within companies. Your experiences and reflections will make the content more meaningful to them.

3. Teach your audience about planning and implementing projects

Problems are like many things in life … when you have clear planning, you’re more likely to be successful.

Use the content provided to show how the PDCA Cycle works within problem-solving situations.

Note that this cycle is often referred to as the Deming Cycle or the Deming Wheel.

Think through possible concerns, experiences, or questions about using the PDCA Cycle, so that you can have the most practical possible discussion on the four simple stages involved.

4. Introduce your audience to Force Field Analysis

Imagine sitting down with a good friend.

Someone that you get on with well. And, are used to talking too.

The discussions are easy and you cover a lot of topics.

This is how you should approach this section.

By keeping the discussion simple, you will highlight that there are many competing forces at work within all problem-solving situations.

You can then use the content to:

  • Share with your audience that Force Field Analysis is a robust technique when used in conjunction with the PDCA Cycle.
  • Highlight that Kurt Lewin developed this technique to assist in diagnosing situations (e.g., all the forces for and against a decision).
  • Discuss that this approach is helpful when looking at the variables involved in planning and implementing a change program. And, when attempting to overcome resistance to change.
  • Stress that Lewin assumed that in any situation, there are both driving and restraining forces that influence any change that may occur.

Approaching this section in a conversational fashion way makes your audience feel more involved. They develop more awareness. It shows them exactly what they can do when using these techniques. And, it builds more practical skills.

5. How to explore a useful problem-solving process

The need for effective problem-solving methods is one of the most common reasons companies seek out problem-solving skills training courses.

To keep your language simple and practical, use the content to explore the following a seven-step Problem Solving Process:

  1. Identify the problem.
  2. Explore the problem.
  3. Set goals.
  4. Look at alternatives
  5. Select the best solution.
  6. Implement the solution.
  7. Evaluate.

6. Learning from when problem-solving fails

Deliver this section with an endpoint in mind.

You know you want to delight and help your audience.

And when you deliver this content — whether it’s in a full-day training course or a webinar — you need to prepare your audience for when things go wrong.

Each piece of content provided communicates one simple way that problem-solving approaches can fail:

  1. Poor problem-solving skills.
  2. Lack of focus.
  3. Lack of resources.
  4. Non-implementable solutions.

To foster more engagement, incorporate examples from your own experiences with problem-solving skills.

When you show your experience and connect with your audience emotionally, they’re more likely to find your content meaningful.

Order this problem solving training course material now!

$49.00Add to cart

Bonus: Free expert training guides

Starting today, with all Oak Innovation training course products, you’ll receive eight free training guides that will help you add extra value to your training courses.

  • Training icebreakers
  • How to select training materials
  • Training games
  • How to increase participation
  • Learning how to improve your questioning skills
  • How to improve your listening skills
  • Learn how to deal with difficult people
  • How to evaluate training courses

Did you know …?

Did you know that we link our course development process with Google’s dynamic “people also ask” search feature?

That way, you get content that is always practical and relevant.

Here are the top questions that we’re seeing people asking about problem-solving skills:

  1. Why are problem solving skills important?
  2. What are the six common problem solving approaches?
  3. What are the main problem solving techniques?
  4. What are the basic steps in problem solving?
  5. How do you make a decision?
  6. How can I be good at problem solving?
  7. What are the 5 stages of problem solving?
  8. What are the main barriers to problem solving?
  9. What are the main problem solving strategies?
  10. What are key attributes of a good problem solver?

What our customers say

My colleagues and I were so impressed with the quality of the Problem Solving course and all the marvelous extras that were included that we bought the whole suite of courses! Thank you for introducing our organization to your products.

Betsy Pickren, Founding Partner, Exceleration Partners

Thanks very much for the problem-solving material. It’s all very comprehensive. You offer much more, which will surely help trainers a great deal.

Adam Knight-Markiegi, Policy Officer, Sitra

I have over 30 years of Training and Development experience. I just finished previewing Oak’s newest course entitled Problem Solving. Having done the research, designed, and developed many training programs myself from the ground up, I can tell you that this program is ready to go! It is as complete and comprehensive as I have ever seen. It allows for customization and tailoring and is flexible enough to fit any business situation. I have used Oak products in the past and can assure you that you will not find a better product on the market that matches the comprehensive nature, quality, and price of this offering, they have thought of everything! Trust me, save yourself a lot of time, money, and energy. you don’t have to re-invent the wheel.

Dave Benak, Training Pays

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Frequently asked questions

What is problem-solving?

Problem-solving is the “steps we take to achieve a specific goal.”

What are the main types of problems that can exist?

These two main types of problems that can exist are:

  1. Problems where the current situation is unexpected. These are known as closed or maintenance problems.
  2. Those where we want to change our current position in some way. But, that there is an obstacle preventing us from doing so. These are open-ended or achievement problems.

What is a closed-ended problem?

Closed-ended problems occur when something happens that should not have happened, or something we expected to happen has not happened (e.g., there is a change from what would be typical or expected).

For example, it could be the unexpected resignation of a critical member of staff, or that the materials required to produce your new product have not arrived as planned.

The cause (or obstacle) may be known or unknown. Still, something now needs to be done about it.

What are open-ended problems?

Open-ended problems occur when we want to achieve a specific objective, but certain obstacles are blocking our progress. There are three main types:

  • When we are unable to reach our current objective (e.g., failing to meet a production target)
  • When we could exceed our current objective (e.g., improved efficiency)
  • When a new objective could be achieved through problem-solving (e.g., creating a new product or service)

Why are problem-solving skills important in the workplace?

Problem-solving skills are important in the workplace because:

  • Staff can become de-motivated
  • Loss of customers
  • Waste of resources
  • Reduction of profit
  • Compromised growth/survival risk
  • Increased productivity
  • Increased enjoyment
  • Less stress
  • Improved quality
  • Improved efficiency

What are the main types of problem-solving techniques?

Here are the top ten problem-solving techniques:

  1. Brainstorming
  2. TPN analysis
  3. Matrix analysis
  4. Paired comparisons
  5. Team purpose analysis
  6. Cause and effect diagram
  7. SWOT analysis
  8. The 5 Ws
  9. The 5 Whys
  10. Six thinking hats

What are the steps involved in completing a TPN (Total, Partial, or None) control analysis?

A TPN Analysis is a simple technique that will allow you to look at problems from the perspective of what ones you can do something about. The methodology for TPN analysis is very straightforward:
Take the numbered list from your brainstorming session. For each item on the list, decide whether your span of control over that item e.g.,

  • T - Total
  • P - Partial
  • N - None

This breakdown will force any individual or group to look only at the problems that can have a real impact. It is essential that when adopting this technique that a degree of realism and honesty is applied. Time after time, we find that participants always realize that they have a lot more control over problems than the first estimate. It is this change of approach that we especially wish to share with you. With practice, we can all approach problems from a more confident starting position and also develop more successful solutions. This personal value of ‘possibility’ will significantly improve how you approach and ultimately solve more problems within work and non-work settings.

What is a simple problem-solving model?

A simple problem-solving model includes the following seven steps:

  1. Identify the problem
  2. Explore the problem
  3. Set goals
  4. Look at alternatives
  5. Select the best solution
  6. Implement the solution
  7. Evaluate

What are the main reasons some problem-solving techniques fail?

These are the main reasons why some problem-solving techniques fail:

  • Poor problem-solving skills
  • Lack of focus
  • Lack of resources
  • Non-implementable solutions
  • Responsibility for problem-solving

How will these training materials help you instruct your learners to be better problem solvers?

These course materials will help your participants to improve their problem-solving skills. And, they will understand a range of problem-solving techniques.

Can I edit the content and add my company logo?

Yes. You can now add your logo and customize the course content freely using Microsoft Word and Powerpoint. You can also deliver the course materials where, when, and as often as needed. Here at Oak Innovation, we like to give you more. That's why every set of course materials include training manuals, slides, and guides. We also include exercises, tests, further reading, action plans, and much more.

Problem Solving Training Course Materials
Problem Solving Skills Training Course Material