As an RA, I have to solve problems by searching through background documents and listening to stakeholders. Every day I am in charge of creating models that help create a successful project. One of the models that we use at Seilevel is the Business Objectives Model, to understand what our client’s business problems are and what should be their objectives. In order to obtain a good business objective model, one needs to obtain good success metrics.
Now completely immersed with this new approach to problem-solving, for better or worse, I have started using success metrics in my personal life. An example of this happened a few weeks ago when my girlfriend and I were discussing which activity we should do on a Saturday afternoon. She wanted to walk around a farmers market while I wanted to watch a movie. She was very keen on going to the market but there was a movie that I wanted to really see.
In order to win this argument, I decided to start asking questions in order to come up with a common interest that we both shared. The interest that we came up with is that both of us had a race the next day that we wanted to run well in. In order to run well, we both determined that resting would be the best idea. I told her that the best way to measure rest is by doing the least amount of movement; she reluctantly agreed. Therefore I concluded that going to the movie theater would be the best solution to our problem because we would make the least number of steps there versus at a farmer’s market.
In order to solve a problem, the best course is to first establish a common interest with your stakeholder (a.k.a. my girlfriend in this story), and define a success metric that validates a specific business objective which all given solutions can then be weighted against.