How often have you sent emails or left voice messages for team members, asking them to solve business problems without considering what else they are working on? In the rush to solve business problems, well-intentioned leaders and managers sometimes create unnecessary chaos and work for themselves and their direct reports. Have you ever solved what you thought was an important business problem only to realize you had created an even larger one by over-reacting or reacting too quickly? Or have you ever diverted key resources away from higher priorities to solve things that weren’t as important?
You and your team can use two tools or disciplines to become much more effective at solving business problems. If you’re implementing EOS, you’re familiar with both. If not, start by creating an Issues List. It’s simple and one of the most important problem solving tools you’ll ever use.
If a true fire is burning, your team needs to react quickly to put it out. Most issues are not that urgent, so encourage every person on your team to record their problems on an Issues List. As business problems arise, just add them to the list. Then, in your team meetings, prioritize and solve those problems. The time you save by not jumping to solve every business problem, is time you can devote to completing assignments you’ve already committed to.
If you’ve been struggling with time management, this one tool or discipline will make a huge difference. The old adage “I must go slow so I can go fast” applies here. Without an Issues List to help you keep things in perspective, every problem becomes THE problem. How many emails, phone calls and stress levels can you reduce each day by applying this one simple discipline to solving your business problems?