5 Characteristics of A Good Problem Solver

Life is full of problems that need solving. When we were little, our problems were as trivial as figuring out a way to get our parents’ approval to eat an entire chocolate bar. And as we grew up, so did the magnitude of our problems. These problems can be nasty at times but they are also necessary in molding our character, behavior and skills, particularly our problem solving skills.

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Entrepreneurs are naturally good at solving problems. They have certain characteristics that help them come up with a great solution each time they’re confronted with a problem. And learning about these characteristics might just help some of us who want to be successful in life and in business.

So what are the characteristics of a good problem solver?

A Good Problem Solver is OBJECTIVE

It is almost impossible to detach emotions when one faces a problem. In fact, most of the primary responses we see are always emotional, there’s frustration, anger and depression. While emotional responses are expected from emotional beings like us, they may not be necessarily helpful when it comes to actually obtaining a solution to a problem.

This is why a good problem solver knows how to remain objective when he’s in the process of solving a problem. A good problem solver is able to identify the problem, what caused it, the people or situations involved – regardless of what he feels.

Can you imagine a judge who makes his verdict based on how he “feels” about the situation or the people involved in the trial? Now imagine if bank institutions are not objective about how one pays his mortgages and just simply “understands” the situation of the delinquent payor?

A good problem solver understands that a good solution to a problem requires objectivity.


In spite of the fact that coming up with a solution to every problem isn’t always easy, a good problem solver is able to transform ideas, even those that seem outside the box, into good and realistic solutions. A good problem solver does not simply resort to the obvious solutions but he is able to explore other possible means; he is one who sees more than one solution and looks for new creative and productive ways to address the problem.

Have you ever had a problem solving situation where the solution was not the one you expected to work? Sometimes, great solutions can arise from outrageous ideas and a good problem solver is not afraid to take that route.

A Good Problem Solver is FOCUSED

They say if you want to complete your work fast, multitask. But if you want to complete your work with quality, focus. The ability to focus is a challenging thing, especially now that we see distractions everywhere! Imagine being challenged with not just one but multiple problems at once?

We always want to hit two birds with just one stone and save us some time but a great problem solver recognizes the importance of focus. When faced with multiple problems, he solves each one at a time. Also, this focus extends to addressing the problem at once. A good problem solver does not waste time, instead, he works on solving the problem immediately.

A Good Problem Solver INVOLVES OTHERS in the problem solving process

The “No man is an island” principle is practiced by a good problem solver. He acknowledges that in order for him to come up with the best solution to the problem, he needs to welcome the ideas and input of other people, especially those who are experts on the matter. A good problem solver is not threatened by the immense ideas and knowledge of others, instead, he is open to learning from these people. Involving others in the equation is not difficult for someone who’s a good problem solver because he focuses on the goal of finding the solutions to the problem.


Disappointments are birthed when one expects too much. And a good problem solver is very much aware of this, that is why, he sets realistic expectations while he is in the process of solving the problem. Realistic expectations can involve failure in solving the problem. So whether a permanent solution was achieved or a temporary one was needed to fill the gap for the meantime, a good problem solver acknowledges the importance of setting realistic expectations.

When the expectations are in check, we are able to evaluate the effectivity of the solutions we’ve identified for the problem.


How do you usually respond to problems?

Do you find yourself competent enough to address the problems that you face?

How important is it for you to learn how to solve your money problems?

If I just described you a moment ago, it means to say you have what it takes to be successful in life and in business. My question to you now is, “Do you already have a business?” If you still don’t have and want to start one. I want to help you out, please visit chinktv.com and check out my course “JUAN NEGOSYANTE”, How To Start Your Business From Scratch.

Chinkee Tan’s Wealth of Advice appears Wednesdays on GoodNewsPilipinas.com

(Chinkee Tan is a top Filipino motivational speaker, wealth and life coach whose goal is to inform, educate, motivate, and disturb. His vision is to help people become financially-literate and debt-free. For more info about Chinkee Tan, please visit his fan page at FB, Twitter and Instagram. Also follow VIBER PUBLIC CHAT GROUP search chinkee tan, and VISIONCHINKEE on You Tube for more news and encouragements.)

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