Define the problem.
What exactly is the problem? Understand that sometimes, things that seem like a problem are actually just facts of life—meaning, you can’t do anything about it! For example, if interest rates rise, this is not a problem. You can’t solve it; you can only work around it.
Identify what else is the problem.
What is another way you can define your problem? For example, your initial problem may be that your sales are too low. Another way you could define that would be to say your competitor’s sales are too high. You now have two viable solutions—for the first problem definition, you may want to increase advertising, but for the second problem definition, you may want to improve your product/service.
Execute solutions quickly.
Don’t hesitate, act fast, and you can solve problems before they become too big.
Understand why the problem occurred in the first place.
Then, look for a solution that addresses that initial cause.
Deal with 80% of your problems immediately.
Only push 20% of your problems for later, but be sure to set a date to work on them.
Make someone responsible for executing a solution.
Ensure that your solutions will be carried out.
Determine how you will measure the results of your solution.
For example, will you measure the increase in sales as a results of your solution?