Problem Solving

UC Core Competencies - Achieving Results

  • Anticipates and identifies problems; conducts appropriate analysis to understand stakeholder interests. Generates and evaluates alternative solutions. Takes thoughtful risks.

    • Risk taking

    • Evaluating pros and cons

    • Prioritizing

    • Timeliness of problem resolution

    • Understanding impact

    • Accountability

What Is Problem Solving?

Problem solving is a daily practice inside and outside of the workplace. Understanding the process of solving a problem allows you to work towards a solution quickly and effectively.

There are 4 basic steps in solving a problem:

1. Defining the problem

2. Generating alternatives

3. Evaluating and selecting alternatives

4. Implementing solutions

Learn more about each of these steps here.

Makeover Your Negative Mindset

Alison Ledgerwood, professor of psychology at UC Davis, conducted a study that revealed how difficult it is to switch from a negative perception to a positive one. The way that situations are presented deeply affects our perceptions- we naturally tend to fixate on negative aspects. This may be due to evolutionary reasons, sometimes we need to remember negative information to find a solution. Other times, it is beneficial to be aware of our negative fixations and practice mindful thinking in order to reframe our negative perceptions.

Learn how to make...

Strategic Thinking

Strategic thinking is the ability to think on a big and small scale, long and short term, and into the past and the present. While strategic thinking is a valuable skill for everyone in an organization, it becomes increasingly essential as you ascend the ladder. In fact, you may have a difficult time being promoted or succeeding as a leader without it. Yet, no one formally teaches strategic thinking—so it's critical to take the initiative and learn how to do it yourself.

Career and personal branding expert Dorie Clark shows you how to carve out time to think...

Qualities of a Critical Thinker

Critical thinking is an approach to the world, a way of life that goes beyond skill or technique. Effective critical thinkers go beyond surface level exposition while digging deeper into other arsenals of knowledge in an attempt to fully understand a given situation or scenario.

Read here for essential qualities that distinguish effective critical thinkers from the rest.

Manager Success: Driving Innovation

Encouraging innovation in the workplace increases the ability to effectively generate, evaluate, and execute new ideas. This is helpful as it prevents the work environment from being too risk averse and isolated from the rapidly changing outside world. Boosting innovation in the workplace can be done through team challenges and exercised that include generating and improving employee ideas....

Finding Your Productive Mindset

Time management tools and programs can only go so far. If you want to boost your productivity in a lasting way, you need to change the way you look at your time and your tasks. In this installment of the Productivity Tips series, productive leadership author and speaker Dave Crenshaw explains how to boost your productivity by shifting your perspective.


Find Your Time Management Style

When it comes to time management strategies, one size does not fit all. To create your optimal workday, you must consider many factors, including the nature of your job, the level of interaction you have with others, and your personal preferences. In this course, productivity expert Dave Crenshaw expands upon the concepts covered in his other time management courses to help you boost your productivity by crafting a personalized approach to time management. Dave takes you through an assessment to discover your time maangement style and then shows how to adapt fundamental time management...

Bring Resolution to Your Conflicts

Improve your relationships with your coworkers, clients, and managers and find your way through conflict back to cooperation. In this LinkedIn Learning course, negotiation and leadership coach Lisa Gates shares the secrets of effective conflict resolution and reveals simple, repeatable techniques that apply in most business situations. She presents "The Resolution Roadmap," a practical framework for exploring and navigating conflict resolution,...

Why You Never Seem to Have Enough Time

As researcher Cassie Mogilner and her colleagues write in a 2012 paper, “With waking hours largely consumed by work, precious minutes remain for the daily list of to-dos, including exercise, cleaning, and socializing with friends and family.”

At first glance, the issue seems straightforward. Time pressure comes down to a lack of time, right? Well, partly. It’s the feeling that we don’t have enough time to do what we want to do—but it turns out that feelings...

Want to Find FulFillment at Last? Think Like a Designer

You’re going to learn how to find a fulfilling career. You’re going to learn how to better navigate life’s big-moment decisions and kill your “wicked problems” dead. How? By training yourself to think like a designer.

That, anyway, is the premise of “Designing Your Life,” a class taught at Stanford University (the school’s “most popular class,” according to Fast Company magazine) as well as the just-published book that grew out of it, “Designing Your Life: How to Build a Well-Lived, Joyful Life” (Knopf).

The two men who created the class and wrote the book are Silicon Valley...