Saturday, February 17, 2007

Stuctured Problem Solving

The school had organized an exciting session for us today.A Queen's MBA alum who is working as a Strategy Consultant with Arthur D Little was here to give us an overview on "Structured Problem Solving’. It was a Saturday but yet there was a good response for the event.The session was very useful as it gave us a good perspective on how to think, analyze and present ideas.
There were several take aways for me. The speaker recommended us to read the McKinsey Way, the McKinsey Mind and the Pyramid Principle to get a better idea about the structured problem solving method.

Here are the key learnings from the session:

As a Consultant, you should be very good at 4 things:
-Structured Problem Solving
-Creating Effective Presentations
-Writing Reports for the client
-Delivering Presentations

Key steps to work through a problem:
-Structuring the Problem
-Initial Hypothesis
-Analysis Design (AD)
-Gathering Data
-Interpreting Results
-Presenting Ideas

Use the SCQ technique

-Realize when you want to use a deductive logic and inductive logic
while making presentations

Gathering Data:

Primary Research
Annual Report
-Start with the CEO report, report to shareholders
-Perform Ratio Analysis, Calculate Key measures
Eg: Increasing sales, sales per salesperson per region

Web Search Engine
-, Annual Reports Publications industry and company info of over 1000 journals Dow Jones Interactive

-Other Info sources in the firm (KM system)

Secondary Research
- Buy the information from research firm

Client Interviews
Before the interview
-Write an interview guide, a list of key 3-4 questions that you would want to ask
-Send the interview questions to interviewer in advance

During the interview
-Be an engaged listener. Show "uhmm."
-Politely but firmly kept the interview on track

Some more tips:
-Always remember the 80/20 rule
-Make a chart everyday
-Don't make the facts to fit the solution
-Always ask "What's the so what"?
-Perform Sanity Check

He also gave us some excellent tips on making presentations.
Over all, a Saturday that was well spent !


At 10:20 PM, Blogger Anjar Priandoyo said...

yup i'm agree, i think interview is the most important part, could you tell me detail about interviewing tips. i find its quit difficult, since most of client feel its as intimidating


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