You can find an introduction to Problem Solving Meetings in Chapter 25 of Where the Action Is. These resources will help you plan, run, and troubleshoot the specific Problem Solving Meetings your team needs.
Teams use Problem Solving Meetings to analyze a situation and its causes, assess what direction to take, then create an action plan to resolve the problem.
- What do we know about the problem?
- What are our options?
- What are we going to do to address it?
- Incident Response
- Strategic Issue Resolution
- Major Project Change Resolution
Most problem solving meetings include these steps.
- Problem Definition
- Solution Goals & Constraints
- Identify Possible Solutions
- Select Approach
- Define Action Plan
- Confirm Next Steps
- Find a solution to a problem.
- Secure commitment to enact the solution.
- A solution or possible solution options.
- Clarity about who will do what by when.
- A scheduled check-in time.
- Understanding of the problem’s scope.
- A path forward—getting unstuck.
- Support for tackling the problem.
Meeting Agenda Templates and Guides
How to Access the Wisdom of Your GroupPaul Axtell - Seeking input from colleagues is different from the typical approach to group problem solving. Problem solving is a back-and-forth conversation. Seeking input from colleagues is a reflective exercise built around observing your colleagues discuss a problem or idea.At the heart of this meeting agenda template design... [ more ]
How to Run an Urgent Problem Solving MeetingElise Keith - This meeting agenda template helps a team find short-term tactical solutions to an urgent problem. The conversation includes time to gain a shared understanding of the problem, but focuses primarily on listing and evaluating possible solutions and the creation of a short- term action plan. Use this meeting to... [ more ]
Lucid Blog Posts
Elise Keith (2019). At Lucid Meetings, our mission is to make it easy for teams to run successful meetings every day. Teaching teams the skills they need to run successful meetings seems like an obvious way for us to fulfill this mission, which is why we've now opened our first courses to students. We opened Meeting School now because, after over a decade of research and work with high-performing organizations, we know what works.
Elise Keith (2016). This meeting format is best for urgent problems that require a speedy tactical response. When you leave the meeting, someone will immediately go out and do something to start solving the problem.
Elise Keith (2015). There are times when I put a meeting on my schedule, and I have no good idea why. I don’t really know the goal of the meeting, there’s no agenda, and I have no clue what the meeting is meant to accomplish.
Chris Gift (2012). The first thing you must do is assess the situation. Is this a small or large problem? Do you need to call for help or can you deal with it locally? Don't just look at the immediate problem (the patient) - make sure to assess the surrounding environment.
Recommended Reading & Resources
- "The five keys to a successful Google team", Julia Rozovsky (2015).
- Building a psychologically safe workplace. Amy Edmondson (2014).
- Dr. Daniel Siegel’s Hand Model of the Brain. Danie Siegel (2012).