A Problem-Finding Approach to Effective Corporate Planning

A Problem-Finding Approach to Effective Corporate Planning

A Problem-Finding Approach to Effective Corporate Planning

A Problem-Finding Approach to Effective Corporate Planning

Synopsis

Following Thomas Fuller's dictum that "a danger foreseen is half avoided," Thierauf has developed a technique called problem finding which allows corporate planners to go beyond problem solving to confront future problems and identify future opportunities. This approach contrasts with typical problem-solving efforts which are based on the "management by exception" principle, that is, things that have gone wrong are corrected after the fact. The author demonstrates how the problem finding approach can be applied to all types of problems with vastly improved results, and illustrates his points with real-world examples.

Excerpt

For effective corporate planning in this ever-changing world, there is a great need to go beyond problem solving by focusing on problem finding. Today, corporate planners typically resort to solving short- to long-range problems facing an organization by using the traditional problem-solving process. In contrast, the latest thrust helpful in the realm of corporate planning is the problem-finding process. Basically problem finding looks out into the future and identifies those problems confronting the organization. In turn, these problems are brought back to the present time and solved so as not to jeopardize forthcoming organizational performance. In addition, problem finding identifies for implementation opportunities that are related to these future problems. Opportunities also can be identified by corporate planners for current operations.

The text looks at the underlying theory and practice of problem finding. To emphasize its practice and to illustrate the usefulness of this new approach, typical well-known corporations are presented. These examples are found in Chapters 1 through 9. Real-world examples are expanded in Chapters 10 through 12 to include the automobile, airline, and computer industries. This range of applications illustrates the viability of this broad approach for corporate planners.

In each chapter, there are a number of learning-oriented features. These include the following:

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