[Skillshare] Basic Strategic Thinking Strategies | Dr. Warren Chalklen | Skillshare

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[Skillshare] Basic Strategic Thinking Strategies

teacher avatar Dr. Warren Chalklen, Education Innovator

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

6 Lessons (14m)
    • 1. Overview of where to find each skill

    • 2. Design Thinking

    • 3. Double Loop Learning

    • 4. Policy Analysis

    • 5. Power Analysis

    • 6. SWOT Decision Making

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About This Class


** ACCORDING TO WORKFORCE: "Decision making and problem-solving skills are the most important skills in the 21st century."

** SPECIAL FREE BONUS** EXCEL DECISION MAKING WORKBOOK INCLUDED. In order to further improve the student experience, there is a free download of an Excel workbook packed with activities and ready to use models. This helps ensure everything is even easier to understand & even more fun and engaging!**

Are you ready to take your career to the next level? In this course, you will learn a range of problem solving and decision making strategies.

This course covers important topics such as decision making skills, conflict resolution models, product analysis and strategic thinking. You will learn or remind yourself of these concepts that will help make you more successful!The contents of this course are all based on my work experience as a Policy Analyst in The Office of the Presidency of South Africa, founder of Grow2Lead, a leadership and non-profit organization in South Africa and a Data Associate for a leading Education nonprofit in New York City.  I received a PhD from Texas A&M University and a Master's degree in Public Administration from the Bush School of Government. This course ties together both my theoretical knowledge and practical experience in a dynamic, practical and applicable way.


Students of this course will enjoy learning a range of problem solving and decision making strategies….from the Eisenhower Model, SWOT analysis, to the Long Tail, Integration and Cost-Benefit Analysis Techniques.  Use this course to take your career to the next level!What are the requirements?

  • Come ready to learn :)

What am I going to get from this course?

  • Join a global community of students!
  • Superb reviews!
  • Over twenty decision making and problem solving strategies!
  • Learn how to make better decisions!
  • Use the models to resolve conflicts and deliver great feedback!
  • Conduct a product analysis!
  • Analyze policy
  • After this course you will have the tools / skills needed to make important decision to take you to the next level!

Who is the target audience?

  • Anyone interested in learning about or brushing up on their decision making skills.

Meet Your Teacher

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Dr. Warren Chalklen

Education Innovator


Dr. Warren Chalklen is an education innovator who has taught over 92,000+ students across 179 countries using online and face to face platforms. He is passionate about building individual and organizational capacity in the fields of diversity, policy analysis, and data driven performance with softwares such as Excel, Salesforce and Balanced Scorecard tools. In his spare time he loves to travel and recently returned from a vacation in Cuba!

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1. Overview of where to find each skill: Hello and welcome to this course master strategic thinking and problem solving skills in front of you. You have 20 strategic thinking and problem solving skills strategies, and what I've done is divide them into coal categories. These are decision making, conflict resolution, product analysis and strategic thinking. The table in front of you helps you organize these. So in the case off a scenario in which you need to use them, you can always come back and see which of these strategies most apply to you. In addition to the table you also have at the bottom of your sheet each of these strategies in alphabetical order that we're going to cover in this course and these can be seen at the bottom. The remainder of this course will actually go through each of these in each sheet. You will see both the explanation as well as activities that we're going to cover that help you use thes and apply these to your daily life. I look forward to seeing you in the rest of the course as we go through these 2. Design Thinking: a powerful, powerful, powerful method off thinking through strategic decisions is using what Jean Malena used to transform the city of Curitiba. He transformed Curitiba in Brazil to be one of the most efficient, effective and human centered cities in the world. And he pioneered things like the rapid Bassett trans of system. He pioneered trash for food programs in the city. And when people analyse his leadership and his decision making process, they realized that he was using something called the design process. The design process uses five distinct pieces. Discovery, interpretation, ideation, experimentation and evolution. And the questions that you will need to ask yourself is in the discovery pieces, I have a challenge. How do I approach this interpretation? I learned something. How do I interpret it? Ideation. I see an opportunity. What do I create? Experimentation. I have an idea. How do I build it? And five evolution. How do I evolve it? And one of the things that Jaime Lerner did, And this can also be seen in Places such a Stanford by Christophe Mental and Larry Leifer. When they talk about HB I Stanford design thinking, they said that there's four key pieces off principles that one needs to think about when they're implementing design thinking. The 1st 1 is the human rule. All design activity is ultimately social in nature, the ambiguity rule. You have to preserve ambiguity. You have to include ambiguity in your decision making process. The redesign rule. All design is redesigned, and the Tange ability rule making ideas tangible always facilitates communication. So with these with us framework in mind, this is really critical to think about, um, the work that you are doing and how you can include some of these pieces, and I highly recommend reading some of Crystal Meinel and Laurie lifers work. 3. Double Loop Learning: When we think about problems, we might be stuck in something. Chris Algeria's calls Single loop Learning Single loop planning is improving a system as it exists. Systems as they exist, often produce problems that permeate or repeat themselves after what Krystle jurist developed was a phrase essentially or concept, which he reframes as a double loop. Learning, which he describes, is not only fixing a problem but thinking about the underlying assumptions that permeate this particular problem. Management theorists took this even further and began to develop a model, which they called the Double Loop Learning Model, which Krystle Juris is the founder off. And what this does is it questions our underlying assumptions. It helps us think about our techniques, goals, values and strategies. And then think about our results A good question that I like to think about when I was really thinking through Double Lubin single new planning is a single learning question. Could be This is a co ken. A double loop learning question is, why do I need this co Ken? What role does it play? How does it fit into the vision? Is this the best way you is? This the best product that I could be working with. And that's just an example of a Coke can. Just a random object. But these are the questions that you could ask. So building on that I put together some three questions that have helped me think about this even further. So what am I underlying? Assumptions like values? Is this process emerging for me? So not just thinking about processes but thinking about values and one of the things that chime Elena often does, um, in thinking about creativity. Sham Learner is the former mayor of Curitiba in Brazil and one of the most successful males in the world. He said that one of the things that will stir creativity is if you take a zero off your budget, what would happen if that that that was the case? So Krystle jurors would build on this and say that would possibly cultivate double loop learning. So in summation, when thinking about doubly planning, you could do this either as an individual or as a team to stimulate and really question the underlying assumptions that are leading some to some of the re occurring problems that may be existing in your organization. 4. Policy Analysis: my work in policy has after news multiple frameworks that are very, very useful in the field of decision making and strategic thinking. We're using a model by Eugene Baah Dog, who wrote a great book called A Practical Guide for Policy Analysis. The Eightfold path to more effective problem solving. Now, just as a form of disclosure, I don't receive any funding from or any compensation. My role as the instructor in this course is to share with you. Some great resource is, and so that is the only reason for me, me sharing with you some of these great works that I have come across in my development of this course, Barak proposes an eighth fold strategy that begins by identifying the problem, thinking about what the problem is and collecting evidence to support this particular problem or support the existence of this problem. Once you are able to really understand the problem by first identifying it and then collecting evidence, the third step is to construct the alternative. So if there is a status quo, you need to think about the options that you have. For example, if there is a smoking problem and you're thinking about how to tackle this problem. The status quo is that people are dying from smoke inhalation and the cancer that's caused by it. Option one would be to ban smoking all together. Option three could be to tax smoking. Remember, option to would be to keep it the same. So these are some alternatives that you have. Then you would have to weigh it against criteria. So what would the cost be if we had to ban smoking altogether? Cost is a very informative criteria. A second criteria could be not only the social cost but the economic cost and thinking about the social impact off a particular policy. You could also talk about time efficiency, and you could also talk about its impact on stakeholders. Then you would project the outcomes Thea Outcomes for, for example, panning smoking is that you could have an underground smoking industry. You could also have a some sort of alternative to smoking. Ah, pop up and smoking could really become the new drug industry. If you had to go with policy, one policy tours. People will continue to die at the rate that they do, but policy three, the one that has likely been adopted. Is the taxation off cigarettes. Raising the price of cigarettes decreases the demand for cigarettes. And so people are priced out and therefore less people are able to afford cigarettes or less. People die as a result of cigarettes. You would have to confront the tradeoff. So if you had to choose banning cigarettes altogether, what with the trade off speed, what would who would be against you and how would you be able to confront? Um, those demands taxation? What would the implications of that be and the status quo? You would then decide what policy you would want. And finally you would tell your story. You would write a report, he would put a presentation together, or you would meet with your stakeholders and communicate to them the decision that you have made as a result of going through this eight fold process 5. Power Analysis: part of my work in the policy arena was conducting what we would call a power analysis. A po analysis is an analysis that helps you map how certain players may respond to your policy and how they may shape the outcome of that policy. And so it looks at the power players who are in the landscape, the policy landscape. We use the policy lands power analysis to really think about who can influence and who has interest. And we think about them in terms of the actions they can take in relation to our policy position. So, for example, high power interested people in other words, people that are here high power, high interest. These are people you must fully engage with and make the greatest efforts to satisfy high power, less interested people. In other words, high power. Less interested people put enough work in with these people to keep them satisfied, but not so much that they become bored with your message. Low power interested people. You should keep these people adequately informed of the work that you're doing and talk to them to ensure that no major issues are arising. These people cannot often be very helpful for your project and then low power. Less interested people again monitor these people, but do not bore them with excessive communication. So the key things that you need to think about, Ah, these two quadrants A and B who fits into these quadrants. And how can you ensure that you meet the needs? All that you have a keen eye on these players because they may have a big role in the outcome of your policy position. 6. SWOT Decision Making: The SWAT analysis is perhaps one of the most popular methods off thinking about strengths and weaknesses and making decisions in the business environment and across organizations around the world. SWAT stands for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. What I've done is think about this mall in terms of the business, um, perspective and thinking about your work from that perspective, Um, and what I've done is I've put it together, a table that helps you compare your strengths to your competitive strengths. You can also her in these questions to yourself and your own performance and an organization. But I have thought about this from the perspective off strategic decision making as an organization. And so what I recommend you do is you, actually, as a team, think through each of these questions and relate them to your competitors. What you will then do is have a more holistic and realistic um, understanding of your organization and the things that you need to do to improve in the areas that you can focus on for the next quarter or in the longer term