One way to look at the problems we face is to divide them into three types, critical, tame or wicked. A fire in the building is a critical problem: we have to get out right now, there is no time for discussion. A famine is a tame problem: by planning ahead, organising supplies and generally making best use of the ‘seven fat years’ we can avoid the danger. Flooding can be wicked problem: a complex (not just complicated) threat, many different options and opinions about what to do and any attempt to solve one part of the problem seems to make another part worse. Similarly, there are three ways to approach getting people to do things: direction, management and leadership. Each of these approaches is more suitable for one of the types of problem outlined above. Expert leaders know what type of problem they are facing, which approach to use and how to do so skilfully.

In this workshop we will examine the types of problems and which is the appropriate approach to use. We will then look at the factors that make each approach work and how to improve our chances of success in using them.

So, fire, flood or famine? After this workshop it won’t matter, you will be comfortable dealing with any of them

When and Where?

Comments from members on this workshop:

  • He provoked thought – missing the jigsaw piece.
  • Opened my mind to the different styles and how to strike a better balance.
  • Clear and useful analogies.
  • Made me think about leadership styles again.
  • Made me think about my biggest people problem.
  • Charles gave me more understanding of leadership styles and situations.
  • Made the session simple and straight forward.

More about the speaker

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