Recording Lessons Learned

C:\Users\Darren\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\Temporary Internet Files\Content.IE5\EOAYJ771\MC900071005[1].wmf

Once you have solved the problem successfully, it is time to apply what you have learned to make solving future problems easier.

Planning the Follow-Up Meeting

C:\Users\Darren\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\Temporary Internet Files\Content.IE5\3YJGCFYP\MC900436996[1].wmf

Have a follow-up meeting after the solution has been implemented. Here are some things to consider when planning this meeting:

  • Make sure you have a clear agenda for the meeting. The purpose of this meeting is to conduct a final evaluation of the problem, the selected solution, and the implementation project. Use the follow up meeting to find out if any of the team members still have frustrations about the problem or its solution. It is also time to celebrate successes and identify improvements, discussed in the next two topics.
  • Make sure to invite all of the team members involved with the creative problem solving process and the solution implementation.
  • Make sure to consider the meeting arrangements, such as refreshments and equipment needed.
  • Invite the participants in plenty of time, to make sure that all key members can be present for the meeting. Make such each participant knows the purpose of the meeting so that all have the appropriate incentive to attend.

Celebrating Successes

C:\Users\Darren\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\Temporary Internet Files\Content.IE5\9MJXCRQW\MC900431645[1].png

After the problem has been solved, take the time to celebrate the things that went well in the problem solving process. Try to recognize each person for their contributions and accomplishments.

You can celebrate successes by recognizing the contributions of the team members in the follow-up meeting. Alternatively, you can have a party or other form of celebration. A good activity just needs to help the team celebrate a job well done in coming up with all the solutions, evaluating them, and finally implementing a solution effectively.

Identifying Improvements

C:\Users\Darren\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\Temporary Internet Files\Content.IE5\ZKNEI80I\MC900437000[1].wmf

There have probably been some bumps along the road in the creative problem solving process. Take the time to identify lessons learned and ways to make improvements so that the next problem solved will be even better.

Meeting with team members and stakeholders to identify improvements is a valuable exercise for several reasons.

  • It ensures everyone is aware of the challenges encountered and what was done to resolve them.
  • If something is learned from a mistake or failed endeavor, then the effort put into the task is not entirely wasted.
  • Participants can apply these lessons to future problems and be more successful.

Case Study

Hillary, John and Clinton were happy they had successfully implemented and managed the solution to their marketing problem. However, they were struggling to come up with a method of recording that success and using it to define and refine future solutions to similar problems. They were frustrated that they had come up with a solution but still didn’t know how to record it. Tensions were rising until John suggested the hold a follow-up meeting, and Hillary and Clinton helped lay out an agenda, arrange a relevant time for the meeting and invite all those who were involved in implementing the solution. Afterwards, they planned a celebration and were happy that they had come to an amicable solution to yet another challenge.