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What's the Problem?

Sometimes problem solving may be nothing more than the art of asking the right questions at the right time. Think of a problem you are currently facing and write it down:

Have your partner ask you at least 20 of the following questions to solve it:

  • Who is affected by the problem?
  • Who else has the problem?
  • Who decided that the situation is a problem?
  • Who would be happy if the problem was solved?
  • Who would be sad if the problem was solved?
  • Who could prevent the problem from being solved?
  • Who needs to solve the problem more than you?

  • What do you think will change about the problem?
  • What do you like about the problem?
  • What do you dislike about the problem?
  • What can be changed about the problem?
  • What can't be changed about the problem?
  • What do you know about the problem?
  • What don't you know about the problem?
  • What will it be like if the problem is solved?
  • What will it be like if the problem isn't solved?
  • What is the principle underlying the problem?
  • What seems to be most important about the problem?
  • What seems to be least important about the problem?
  • What else do you need to know about the problem?
  • Where is the problem most noticeable?
  • Where else does the problem exist?
  • Where is the best place to begin looking for solutions?
  • Where does the problem fit into the larger scheme of things?

  • When does the problem occur?
  • When doesn't the problem occur?
  • When did the problem first become a problem?
  • When is the problem likely to occur again?
  • When will the problem get worse?
  • When will it get better?

  • Why is the situation a problem?
  • Why do you want to solve the problem?
  • Why don't you want to solve the problem?

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