Simon London: And thanks, as always, to you, our listeners, for tuning into this episode of the McKinsey Podcast. It doesn’t mean they don’t have an answer; it’s just not where they are in their thinking process. The best teams allow divergent thinking to bump them off whatever their initial biases in problem solving are. If there’s a large design team or many designers on the team, and you come on Friday and say, “What’s our week-one answer?” they’re going to struggle. Simon London: But, again, these final steps are about motivating people to action, right? Charles Conn: I love this question because I think decision-making theory, without a bias to action, is a waste of time. Select topics and stay current with our latest insights, How to master the seven-step problem-solving process. Rather than writing a big deck with all my supporting evidence, they’ll bring an example, a thing, and that feels different. Charles Conn: It was a pleasure to be here, Simon. %PDF-1.4 %���� In this episode of the McKinsey Podcast, Simon London speaks with Charles Conn, CEO of venture-capital firm Oxford Sciences Innovation, ... 4 How to master the seven-step problem-solving process or what the difference is between that business and the competitors. You think you’ve seen the problem before, and therefore what’s available is your previous conception of it—and we have to be most careful about that. 0000001489 00000 n How much can I move that lever?” Obviously, we try and focus our efforts on ones that have a big impact on the problem and the ones that we have the ability to change. our use of cookies, and Your problem-solving methodology is test and learn, test and learn, test and learn, and iterate. Simon London: OK. Simon London: But they have to respect each other’s methodology and be prepared to flex, maybe, a little bit, in how this process is going to work. 0000005652 00000 n That is a heuristic in itself, the A/B testing that is used in many parts of the world. Whereas I would imagine your design thinkers—no, they’re going off to do their ethnographic research and get out into the field, potentially for a long time, before they come back with at least an initial hypothesis. There’s always a level-one answer, there’s a level-two answer, there’s a level-three answer. It just uses technology and feedback loops in a fast way. Is it an ‘and’? Charles Conn: Maybe the easiest one is the classic profit tree. How do you pick the right tools? You’ve done your work plan. This, I think, brings us onto the third step in the process, which is that you have to prioritize. Does it make sense?”—before you launch too far. H��UMo7�ﯘS!v���] ��v�H�&V�CR��*��UIn��y䮴r��qE�7��7�Ɋ^��_OVs�V�7�~s~}A�^��3~������n4�wE=揚��#J{O��/oh�����A:���B�n��x?�Q%������F{��l�L�4���(���ӈ��p]Y�*eS���V������\�κ\x�K�t�) w��v���(GC�Mkȵ��6���U��64� Charles Conn: I love the way you’ve described that, because, again, some people think of problem solving as a linear thing, but of course what’s critical is that it’s iterative. 0000024309 00000 n For me, design thinking gives us a constant reminder of creativity, empathy, and the tactile nature of problem solving, but it’s absolutely complementary, not alternative. Simon London: So it sounds like there is an underlying principle: “Acknowledge and embrace the uncertainty. Then you rinse and repeat, rinse and repeat. There’s optionality and exploring different options. When we ideate—and that’s very similar to the disaggregation, prioritization, and work-planning steps—we do precisely the same thing, and often we use contrasting teams, so that we do have divergent thinking. It’s one of the best things about the world that we’re in now. Hugo Sarrazin: With an enormous amount of empathy. Simon London: In the real world, we have a lot of uncertainty—arguably, increasing uncertainty. collaboration with select social media and trusted analytics partners Never miss an insight. You can use it to identify which elements you need to realign to improve performance, or to maintain alignment and performance during other changes. Many people use machine learning without understanding algorithms that themselves can have biases built into them. 0000000816 00000 n We see it in the public square. Simon London: I think, in a world of cross-functional teams, an interesting question is do people with design-thinking backgrounds really work well together with classical problem solvers? Charles Conn is CEO of Oxford Sciences Innovation and an alumnus of McKinsey’s Sydney office. I think there are so many wonderful heuristics. Please try again later. This book should be read by students who consider working in management consultancy, describing the "McKinsey approved" 7-Step process of problem solving. That, to me, is the most important step. Just talk about the analysis stage. 0000007312 00000 n Or are these actually just other tools in the toolbox for structured problem solving? What are the constraints that exist?