Problem Analysis: The ability to detect problems, recognize important information, and link various data; to trace potential causes and look for relevant details.
distinguishes essentials from side-issues
works and thinks at a level appropriate to his/her position
sees connections between different problems
is not satisfied with incomplete information; wants to find out more
reviews problems by asking directed questions and using various relevant information sources
distinguishes facts from opinions and assumptions
investigates the cause of a problem
sees causes and effects readily
notices problems that occur and oversees their consequences for the work`s progress
looks at a problem from various points of view: financial, strategic, personal, et cetera
is able to place a problem`s development in time
sees connections between seemingly unconnected operational problems and events
gets to the heart of a matter readily by asking the right questions and using the right sources
sees a problem in a broader context (financial, economic, social, et cetera)
sees connections between seemingly unconnected problems; finds a common denominator
is able to understand a problem in its full complexity and redefine it in simple words
is able to lift operational problems to a more abstract level and translate them into strategy and change initiatives
sees trends and anticipates future developments
Problem analysis has no relation with TMA Drives but can be easily developed if the candidate has a more than average score (7,8,9) on the Cognitive capability Assessment.
What was the last time you were confronted with an unexpected problem? What was the problem exactly? What caused it? What did you do to solve it?
Which steps do you take when analyzing a problem? Could you describe this process using a recent problem you encountered?
Did your analysis of a problem ever turn out to be completely different than you had expected? Could you give an example? What did you get wrong? How could this be avoided next time?
What are specifically complex problems to you? Could you give an example?
It is sometimes difficult to predict the course of a process. Could you give an example of this happening to you?
Ask yourself which kinds of problems you find hardest to solve.
Ask critical further questions if it is not clear to you what the other person is trying to say.
Take short breaks regularly in order to reflect on a problem (e.g. during a walk).
Make an inventory of factual information before analyzing a problem.
Get to the heart of a problem by asking ‘why’ - until the ‘problem behind the problem’ emerges.
Help your candidate get started by indicating where he could find information needed for a thorough analysis of the problem.
Engage the candidate in assignments that require problem solving skills.
Present the candidate with several cases you know well and ask him to mention all the people and authorities, both internal and external, influencing the process. Ask him to estimate the measure and cause of influence. Discuss these findings; review wrong estimations.
Encourage your candidate to ask others for 360º feedback regarding his anticipating problems. What are his strengths and what could be improved? Discuss the results with the candidate.
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