Complex problems involve different people, moving at different speeds, towards different goals. Each with different perspectives! We can think of them as obstacles with complex structures. These obstacles will involve many interconnected variables. The situation will be transforming. There will be external forces that affect the conditions. There will be dynamic (non-linear) behaviour and some history. We can imagine the obstacles like mountains in a moving landscape. Because the situation is emerging there may be no clear solution path. And the outcomes will be unpredictable.
Does this sound familiar? That's because they represent the dynamic real-world scenarios you deal with every day! Dealing with this requires a broad range of skills. These skills are "Complex Problem Solving".
The World Economic Forum lists Complex Problem Solving as the highest ranked skill. And for good reason. Our world is full of them. They can span people, processes, products, technology, finance, and strategy. They can be difficult to define and measure. And they can lay hidden in plain sight! And solving them provides tangible benefits for everyone.
Organisation survival mimics life. To survive you must find and solve problems better than your competitors. It is a core survival skill. It is not optional. If your survival isn't under threat your focus may be growth. Problem solving is an effective strategy for both well-being and growth. Get it right and it results in new capabilities, new possibilities, and new horizons. It is transformational. It works. Nature has been doing it for billions of years. Why not embrace it.
Organisations invest valuable time and effort improving key capabilities. They hire talented people. Become Lean and Agile. Invest in new technologies. And attempt to become more innovative by embracing techniques such as design thinking. These are all valid, yet still organisations fail. Why?
All these efforts get wasted if you are working on the wrong problems! We propose it is time for the next stage in organisational evolution. To become "Problem-Solving Organisations" (PSOs).
There are many ways to tackle complex obstacles. Sometimes all it takes is fresh thinking and common sense. Sometimes it takes orchestration - getting people to work better together. Sometimes it requires a more sophisticated approach. There are many options. A pragmatic 'pick & mix' approach works. We embrace many common tools & techniques. And we create custom ones to fill gaps! This includes our BUMPS based problem-solving framework and tools.
We are developing capabilities in four areas:
1. Helping organisations tackle complex problems
2. Developing problem-solving tools, techniques, and technology (e.g. Apps)
3. Distributing complex problem-solving knowledge & skills
4. Developing Problem-Solving Organisations (PSOs)
Humans have a long history of overcoming obstacles. So rather than immovable mountains, we like to think of them as BUMPS in our evolutionary journey. The BUMPS concept is a new way to think about complex problem spaces. A way to help visualise, analyse, and communicate complex problem scenarios. We use BUMPS as the foundation for our techniques & tools. For example the BUMPS Complex Problem-Solving Framework™.
Your Partner in Problem Solving