Problem-Solving: The five why's

Personal Development

By Kay Fitzgerald
Last Updated November 22, 2020

Excellent problem-solving skills start with understanding how people solve problems.

Imagine only asking five questions and being in a position to solve most problems. 

How To Use The
five why's


Ask "why the problem occurred?"

Get an answer 

Then ask "why it is so?"

Do this 5 times
 

By the third "Why" a solution will start to emerge


The First Why



Why did the machine break down?
 
"Because the operator left the machine alone"

the Second "Why"

Why did the operator leave the machine alone?

"Because it caught fire"

The Third "Why"

Why did it catch fire?

"Because of a faulty generator"

the Fourth "Why"

Why was there a faulty generator?

"Because our maintenance procedures were not applied"

The fifth "why"

Why was our maintenance procedures were not applied?

Because our maintenance procedures were not known by the servicing department

the root cause was the lack of knowledge of MAINTENANCE PROCEDURES BY THE SERVICING DEPARTMENT 

and, not just the machine broke down or operator error



It might sound obvious but it's important to practice this new problem-solving Approach.

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