Learn the key ideas of the book by Nat Greene

Stop Guessing

The techniques for effective problem solving

How many times do we find ourselves faced with a problem that seems impossible to solve? How do great problem solvers find effective solutions when there are hundreds of variables at play? In Stop Guessing, Nat Green shows us how often our approach to problem solving is influenced by our opinion and bias and demonstrates a series of behaviours to adopt in order to help us resolve complex problems.

Stop Guessing
Read in 12 min.
Listen in 15 min.

What does it mean to be a problem solver

Problems are one of the things that we need to deal with every day, in all different areas of our lives: both at home and at work. Some are simple, and require the application of well-known solutions. Whereas others present themselves in a much more complex way, and they require solutions that are not as immediate. Some of these could be:

  • technical problems at home (boiler, DIY jobs);
  • technical problems at work (product quality, IT issues);
  • organisational problems (logistics or personnel complications);
  • personal problems (physical health, bad habits);
  • conflict with loved ones;
  • social problems, such as injustice, poverty and violence.

If we want to become great problem solvers, we need to learn a series of behaviours, and to apply them at the right moment, so that we can solve a problem that other people might have labelled “impossible”.

Each of these problems can be reduced to a lack of understanding of the basic mechanisms and primary causes, and only the right approach can lead us to the optimum solution.


The key ideas of "Stop Guessing"

What does it mean to be a problem solver
Why it is important to avoid guessing
How to “smell” the problem
Why it is important to recognise our ignorance
How to be sure that you are looking for the solution to the right problem
Why we need to know the basics of a process
Why experts are not the perfect solution
The importance of a simple solution
Why the solution must be based on facts
How not to lose sight of the objective
The importance of the choice of method
Take-home message

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