Problem Solving on a Regular Basis, Humans Essay

Excerpt from Essay :

Problem Solving

On a regular basis, humans must solve problems or issues. This has been true for millennia, from the time in which we were hunter-gatherers to now having a myriad of choices in almost every single moment of our lives. We must choose clothing, colors, styles, entertainment, meals, and time schedules, almost down to the minutiae. Because we are now confronted with so many decisions, these decisions often bleed off into more serious and interpersonal conundrums -- colleagues, subordinates, loved ones that problem and decision making solutions are even more complex. However, one way of thinking about a problem or set of challenges involves a rather simple, but powerful, form of analysis: 1) Identify the problem, 2) Brainstorm the alternatives, 3) List advantages/disadvantages for each alternative, 4) Propose a solution, 5) Test the solution. This method is, in fact, part of John Chaffee's Critical Thinking methodology, and may serve one well in a variety of situations (Chaffee, 2011).

I am a 40-year-old male and a professional Fire Chief. My duties vary, but I supervise a number of Firefighters and Administrative Staff on a regular basis. The current situation involves two employees, both trained and certified Firefighters. There is a Community/Homeland Security liaison position open that does not pay a great deal more salary wise, but does allow the individual selected more visibility within the community and a chance to travel and interact more with governmental officials and the public. Two candidates have applied for the position, with one making it very clear that he will go to his union and file a formal protest if not selected.

Candidate A is a younger man, late 20s, a 5-year veteran of the force with a college degree in management. He is well-liked and respected by his peers, congenial, and always seems willing to help others, will trade shifts, is conscientious in the house, with a real can-do attitude. Candidate B. is a 17-year veteran of the force, is extremely competent in all aspects of his position, but has been passed over promotion before for a variety of factors. First, he is competent in his job, safety conscious, yet his colleagues do not trust him. He is surely, always needs to be right and have the last word, cynical to the extreme, and tends to hold a rather entitlement mentality. He has refused to use Department funds to further his education, and begrudgingly attends training sessions only when they are mandatory. His reason for wanting the position is to "get away from the BS" of the day and try something new. He believes his experience in the force makes him a more appropriate candidate because he knows more of the intricacies and has a longer track record. He has told numerous people that if he doesn't get…

Sources Used in Document:

REFERENCES

Chaffee, J., et.al. (2011). Proposing a Solution to a Problem. In Critical Thinking, Thoughtful

Writing. Cenage Learning. Retrieved from: http://college.cengage.com/english/chaffee/critical_thinking/2e/students/writing/chap11.html

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