Any form of management, whether in a business or community organisation environment, is always about options. If you don’t have several options, you are stuck with one path. That may well end up being the path to hell and put you in a worse position than when you started. However, you are now in a commanding position with your problem or opportunity. First of all, by doing the Five Whys and brainstorming the issue, you have identified the real problem or the root cause of the issue.
Next, you went on to do more work on the issue and found several ways to resolve the problem. You will undoubtedly have realised the benefits of going through this process and finding that there is always more than one way to “skin a cat”.
Now it’s time to implement the next step and Pick the Best Solution.
Picking the Best Solution
Much of the decision-making process here will focus on the consequences of each potential solution you develop. If we take our earlier example about meetings being too long, you could have identified several solutions. For example, you might:-
- Implement an agenda for meetings
- Have the secretary call for agenda items
- Implement training for the chair in running meetings more effectively
- Having a meeting procedure coach at the front table to assist the chairperson
- Determine if it must always be the President who chairs the meeting
- Develop a standing Agenda system
- Ensure Meeting Agenda is emailed to all members a week before the meetings
- Develop an onboarding or induction program for new Presidents and Secretaries.
If these are the solutions or improvements your organisation has developed, it is essential to put them into an order of priority. The group will also weed any unsuitable solutions out of the list. Considering the list above, you may notice that you could combine several of these solutions. The potential for integrated solutions is not an uncommon situation; however, I would suggest you look at the consequences of implementing each solution while they are still in a simplistic form. It will be easier to manage.
Consequences of Solutions
Looking at the first potential solution, let’s consider the consequences of implementing this solution.
- What is an agenda?
- What should we include?
- How will it be produced?
- How will it be distributed?
- Where can we find suggested formats?
- Who will produce the Agenda?
- When should it be sent out?
- Why are we doing this?
You will notice that looking at consequences is based on asking the questions in the image on the page. It is a fantastic way of maintaining curiosity and obtaining the correct answers.
Once you complete this review for each solution, combine the ones you believe are suitable and recheck them as an integrated solution.
Picking the best solution is a process where a thorough review is necessary. It’s not enough to have a stab at a solution. Intuition is a valuable indicator, but it should also align with logic. Those two factors should work hand in hand in a balanced manner when considering solutions. Bear in mind that the easiest solution is not always the best solution, nor is the one that will achieve the desired outcomes in the shortest possible time. Your organisation will be around for the long term. Pick the solution with this as a mindset.
Having made your selection, you are now ready for the next step to Implement the Best Solution.