What processes are involved in the problem?

  • Step 1: Define the Problem.
  • Step 2: Clarify the Problem.
  • Step 3: Define the Goals.
  • Step 4: Identify Root Cause of the Problem.
  • Step 5: Develop Action Plan.
  • Step 6: Execute Action Plan.
  • Step 7: Evaluate the Results.
  • Step 8: Continuously Improve.

Step 1: Define the Problem

What is the problem?

How did you discover the problem?

When did the problem start and how long has this problem been going on?

Is there enough data available to contain the problem and prevent it from getting passed to the next process step? If yes, contain the problem.

Step 2: Clarify the Problem

What data is available or needed to help clarify, or fully understand the problem?

Is it a top priority to resolve the problem at this point in time?

Are additional resources required to clarify the problem? If yes, elevate the problem to your leader to help locate the right resources and form a team.

Consider a Lean Event (Do-it, Burst, RPI, Project).

∙Ensure the problem is contained and does not get passed to the next process step.

Step 3: Define the Goals

What is your end goal or desired future state?

What will you accomplish if you fix this problem?

What is the desired timeline for solving this problem?

Step 4: Identify Root Cause of the Problem

Identify possible causes of the problem.

Prioritize possible root causes of the problem.

What information or data is there to validate the root cause?

Step 5: Develop Action Plan

Generate a list of actions required to address the root cause and prevent problem from getting to others.

Assign an owner and timeline to each action.

Status actions to ensure completion.

Step 6: Execute Action Plan

Implement action plan to address the root cause.

Verify actions are completed.

Step 7: Evaluate the Results

Monitor and Collect Data.

Did you meet your goals defined in step 3? If not, repeate th 8-Step Process.

Were there any unforeseen consequences?

If problem is resolved, remove activities that were added previously to contain the problem.

Step 8: Continuously Improve

Look for additional opportunities to implement solution.

Ensure problem will not come back and communicate lessons learned.

If needed, repeat the 8-Step Problem Solving Process to drive further improvements.