Presentation on theme: "Robin Schumaker Coordinator, Office of Gifted Education"— Presentation transcript:
1 Problem-Solving Styles: Individual Preferences for Working on Challenging Tasks or Managing Change Robin SchumakerCoordinator, Office of Gifted EducationVirginia Beach City Public SchoolsFrom the work of Donald J. Treffinger, Edwin C. Selby, Scott G. Isaksen, and James H. Crumel
2 From the work of Donald J. Treffinger People say…“I really enjoy doing things on the cutting edge.”“I really enjoy making things work better.”“Bouncing ideas off others helps me think.”“I think best alone.”“I like to make sure everyone is on board.”“I like to make sure we get a logical result.”KarenExplanation:Reason for working together (Task, goal, assignment, etc.)Interdependent: they must need one another’s experiences, abilities, and commitments in order to arrive at mutually agreed upon goals.Committed to the principle of working together as a group leads to more effective decisions than does working in isolationAccountable as a functioning unit within a larger organization context.From the work of Donald J. Treffinger
3 Problem-Solving Styles Problem-solving styles refer to the ways that individuals find most comfortable as they work on new and challenging tasks and deal with change.From the work of Donald J. Treffinger, Edwin C. Selby, Scott G. Isaksen, and James H. Crumel
4 A person’s problem-solving style might be likened in some ways to “handedness.” From the work of Donald J. Treffinger, Edwin C. Selby, Scott G. Isaksen, and James H. Crumel
5 Problem-Solving Styles Are: Problem-Solving Styles are NOT: Natural (everyone has a style)Neutral (no “right or wrong” styleComfortable (the ways your prefer)Stable (don’t change rapidly)Strengths (how you can be your best)Fixed, inflexible (people can adapt)Measures of abilitiesRules for how to behave“Faults” (things you can’t do well)From the work of Donald J. Treffinger, Edwin C. Selby, Scott G. Isaksen, and James H. Crumel
6 Three Problem-Solving Style Dimensions: Orientation to Change- individual preferences for responding to new ideas, structure, and authority when dealing with change or solving problemsManner of Processing- individual preferences for how and when you use your own inner energy, the energy of others, resources, and the environmentDecision Making- individual preferences for balancing and emphasizing task concerns and personal or intrapersonal needsFrom the work of Donald J. Treffinger, Edwin C. Selby, Scott G. Isaksen, and James H. Crumel
7 Problem-Solving Style Survey Circle the statements that sound most like your child.My child prefers to…use a methodical, precise, and efficient approach to tasks and situationsfocus on a detailed, well-organized, and carefully structured approach.work with the guidance of people in authority.be spontaneous and free-flowing.look for novel ideas and enjoys finding new and original options.work away from direct supervision, rules, and guidelines.look to their own inner thoughts, carefully considering ideas first before being ready to share them with others.work in a quiet environment free from distractions.reflect and think deeply in solitude as they weigh options carefully and thoroughly.share thinking in its early stages and seeks input interactively from others through discussion.work in environments with noise and sound.seek a great deal of input from others (from within or outside the group) before reaching closure.Based on the work of Donald J. Treffinger, Edwin C. Selby, Scott G. Isaksen, and James H. Crumel
8 Problem-Solving Style Survey Circle the statements that sound most like your child.My child prefers to…seek decisions that will achieve the desired outcome.consider problems and challenges with initial emphasis on what is logical and rational.ensure that decisions are defensible on the basis of evidence and sound analysis.seek decisions that all involved can buy into.consider problems and challenges with initial emphasis on human impact.ensure that people are comfortable before acting on decisions.ExplorerDeveloper………………………………………………………………….....Internal processorExternal processor…………………………………………………………………...Person- focusedTask- focused………………………………………………………………..
9 Each dimension is anchored by two clear, but seemingly opposite, styles. Orientation to ChangeExplorersDevelopersExternal processorsManner of ProcessingInternal processorsPerson- focusedDecision MakingTask- focusedFrom the work of Donald J. Treffinger, Edwin C. Selby, Scott G. Isaksen, and James H. Crumel
10 Orientation to Change Developers prefer to: Explorers prefer to: do things betterfind benefit in support and structurework within the stated rules.be seen as precise, thorough, and dependableemphasize improvement and usefulnessdo things differentlyview structure as limiting and confiningchallenge authority, “bend the rules.”be seen as unconventionalemphasize originalityFrom the work of Donald J. Treffinger, Edwin C. Selby, Scott G. Isaksen, and James H. Crumel
11 Manner of Processing: Internal processors are more likely to… External processors are more likely to…look deeply into the task(s) upon which the group is focusedwork to polish and complete new ideas until they are ready to sharereflect and think deeplyenjoy and get energy from working alone or with a few othershelp external people to listenlook outside group context for different perspectives and inputact and respond quicklyenjoy and get energy from working with othersinitiate communication with othersdraw the thoughts of more internal people out in the openFrom the work of Donald J. Treffinger, Edwin C. Selby, Scott G. Isaksen, and James H. Crumel
12 Decision Making: Task- focused Person- focused decision makers prefer to…Task- focuseddecision makers prefer to…promote harmony and positive interpersonal relationshipsuse criteria that are personal, sensitive to feelings, and more subjectiveconsider the personal impact or consequences of a decisionseek options that all people involved can buy intoput people’s feelings over the quality of the outcomefocus on what is logical or rationaluse criteria that are authoritative, verifiable, and more objectiveconsider standards, rigor, or qualityseek the best solution or responseput the quality of the outcome over people’s feelingsFrom the work of Donald J. Treffinger, Edwin C. Selby, Scott G. Isaksen, and James H. Crumel
13 Discussion: In what ways might each distinct problem-solving style add value and provide challenges to problem-solving teams?
14 Implications for individuals, teams, or groups of individuals who need to work together successfully in an effort to solve problems and build constructive working relationships
15 Based on the work of Donald J. Treffinger Ideas for consideration:Orientation to ChangeProvide explorers the opportunity to seek novelty and generate many new ideas in an environment that fosters the freedom to createProvide developers the opportunity to refine and enhance ideas, and form them into more complete, functional, and useful outcomesManner of ProcessingProvide adequate time and space for internal processors to reflect on their ideas.Provide time for external processors to talk and share ideas with others, especially ideas that are in their “infancy stage”Decision MakingProvide individuals with a person- focused style the opportunity to consider the personal or intrapersonal impact or consequences of a decisionProvide individuals with a task- focused style the opportunity to examine and share the logical implications of decisionsBased on the work of Donald J. Treffinger
16 Based on the work of Donald J. Treffinger Having an understanding of an individual’s preferred problem-solving styles is valuable in that…it allows for recognition and understanding of personal strengths.it can lead to an appreciation for style diversity and the information can be used to build and function well in high performing teams.it provides an opportunity to manage behavior carefully and deliberatelycommunication approaches can be modified when it is necessary to collaborate with others.Based on the work of Donald J. Treffinger
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