Class discussion

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This exercise is designed to help you analyze your problem-solving and decision-making skills in order to improve self-awareness and identify potential areas for improvement.

  1. Directions: Beside each statement, indicate the number that best describes your agreement or disagreement.

Key: 4 = Strongly Agree 3 = Agree 2 = Disagree Some-what 1 = Strongly Disagree

1 2 3 4


I always ask, “Is this problem worth solving?” before beginning to solve it.

1 2 3 4


I try to break big problems into manageable pieces instead of trying to solve the whole problem at once.

1 2 3 4


To determine the cause of a problem, I gather enough data to know exactly where, when, and under what circumstances the problem occurs.

1 2 3 4


I have a network of contacts within my company and elsewhere with whom I discuss the problems in my area.

1 2 3 4


I usually use experience, advice from others, or experimentation to help me solve problems.

1 2 3 4


I involve others in problem solving when I need their help to implement a major decision.

1 2 3 4


During “crunch” times, when time is of the essence, I solve problems with little input from others.

1 2 3 4


It’s impossible for me to have all the information about a problem before taking action.

1 2 3 4


I involve others when they know more about a situation than I do, even though it usually takes longer to solve the problem.

1 2 3 4


I usually use brainstorming techniques to generate ideas for solving problems.

1 2 3 4


When I have a big problem to solve, I talk to everyone who has knowledge of the problem, those affected by the problem, and those who will have to implement the problem, before I come up with a solution.

1 2 3 4


Once a solution is implemented, I have a follow-up plan to ensure that the solution fixes the problem.

Total (add your scores)


12–23: Your present problem-solving skills thwart your attempt to reach a solution. Improve your problem-solving approach by following the suggestions in this chapter.

24–35: Your problem-solving skills are satisfactory but could be improved.

36–48: Your problem-solving skills are good. With a little improvement, they could be outstanding.

  1. Submit a log of 2-3 decisions, issues, or problems that you encounter this week.  Think about how you addressed each situation. 
  2. What ideas from the chapter can you use to improve your problem-solving skills.

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