Project Management

Walk Before You Run: The Path To Confident and Creative Problem Solving

PMI Toronto Chapter

Bruce is the founder of ProjectManagementHacks.com, a resource for growing IT project managers.

“Be creative!” That’s the recommendation we see over and over again in the business world. However, there’s just one problem: Making the leap from traditional methods to highly creative methods doesn’t always work well.

You might have been burned in the past when you tried to bring new ideas to the table. Now you’re hesitant to go outside of the box. I’ve been there. If you want to pursue creative problem solving, getting started with smaller efforts first is helpful.

Why It Pays To Start Small With Creative Problem Solving
As project managers, we face the challenge of working with limited formal authority. Therefore, we need the support of colleagues in all of our work. The need for support increases even further when you decide to swing for the fences with creative approaches.

Without building credibility first, creative approaches are more likely to be perceived as “crazy.” If you persist in acting crazily, your project management career growth may stall because you may not be seen as reliable.

Fortunately, there is a low-risk way to practice creative problem solving. The first step lies in becoming familiar with more problem-solving methods (see the book suggestions at the end of this article for ideas). Studying creative problem solving is an excellent first step.

However, study is not enough to build …


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Do, or else do not. There is no 'try'.

- Yoda