Framing the Problem.

February 25th, 2014

How we FRAME the problem can heavily influence the outcome!

Today’s Post is by Michael Figueroa, Account Manager at SafeSourcing.

A story is told about a researcher  who held an experiment to see how conceptually framing a problem influenced the outcome. He showed group 1 a pendulum swinging from a string, and told them to hang it up after providing them with nails and nothing else, and they ended up not completing the task in the allotted time. Group 2 was shown the pendulum weight, a string, and the nails, used the pendulum to hammer the nail into the wall, then hung it up with the string.
Group 1 couldn’t complete the task because they were thinking within the constraints of what they had just seen: A pendulum swinging from a string that needs to be hung up. Group 2 didn’t have that picture in mind, they saw all of the objects in front of them as tools to accomplish a given objective.

Creative problem solving requires the freedom to think outside of traditional constraints. Sometimes even mentioning these constraints can influence individuals and organizations in ways that negatively impact their ability to problem solve. If you really want to discover your teams innovative potential, give them all the variables, define the criteria for success, and set them to work. Counterintuitively, you may find that the less you define HOW the task is to be done, the more efficiently it will be accomplished.

We love finding creative ways to solve your procurement challenges! For more information on how SafeSourcing can assist your team this process or on our “Risk Free” trial program, please contact a SafeSourcing Customer Service Representative.  We have an entire customer services team waiting to assist you today.
We look forward to your comments.


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