# Four Step Problem Solving Process

Using established tools and techniques will help you improve your approach to solving the problems that your team and your organization face.You'll be more successful at solving problems and, because of this, more successful at what you do.The articles in this section of Mind Tools therefore focus on helping you make a success of the first of these steps – defining the problem.

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The key to a good problem definition is ensuring that you deal with the real problem – not its symptoms.

For example, if performance in your department is substandard, you might think the problem is with the individuals submitting work.

At this stage, it's also important to ensure that you look at the issue from a variety of perspectives.

If you commit yourself too early, you can end up with a problem statement that's really a solution instead.

Using our example of substandard work, Cause-and-Effect diagrams would highlight that a lack of training could contribute to the problem, and they could also highlight possible causes such as work overload and problems with technology.

## Comments Four Step Problem Solving Process

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