Category Archive: problem solving

Thoughts on Knowledge and Thinking


A reality is that ALL of us know more than ANY of us, and we are often blind to new ideas because we are so invested and embedded in the old paradigms. Sometimes,… Continue reading

Leadership: Playing The Fool


ASKING for ideas is a powerful way to drive active involvement and participative learning within a workgroup. It can build teamwork and peer pressure for improvement and the reality is that asking is… Continue reading

Thinking about Thinking


There are all kinds of “contemplation figures” out there. I thought to add one more, this one around possibilities. Your thoughts?   One needs to stop pushing and pulling, or at least ask… Continue reading

A Business Planning Square Wheels Haiku


The seasons change and we need to be individually and collectively prepared. But are we preparing with the right approach? Consider: One might think that a collective approach involving the participants might generate,… Continue reading

How much is the ball? A team building opportunity


In his book, “Thinking, Fast and Slow,” Daniel Kahneman posts up a most excellent question that I share below. My thought was to add a bit of reality about organizational issues and opportunities,… Continue reading

Monday or Wednesday, what is the difference?


My friend Brian Remer posted up a blog on creativity and used a metaphor of bicycle riding and showed a brain with a bike. Cute. And it got me to send him back… Continue reading

Learning is a Round Wheels Treasure


Here’s a Chinese Proverb about LEARNING that is also about perceptual acuity and perspective, collaboration, engagement, empowerment and all that stuff. The key is to spend a minute in silent reflection / meditation… Continue reading

New Year Resolutions in Month Eight


It is August. How are you doing on your resolutions to improve your workplace now that it is Month Eight? There is still time to get things done more better faster.   For… Continue reading

Balance, Zen, Choices and Square Wheels


Going through some of the older line art around the issues of leadership and choices and how we think about thinking about things, I thought you might like this one. I mean, the… Continue reading

Simplicity of Problem Solving – Find the ROUND Wheels


Lots of people are random sorters of information, possibilities sorters, and their preferred styles of thinking might be expressed as, “Throwing mud at the wire fence to see what sticks where…” For those… Continue reading

Shifts in Thinking – Some Reframing Ideas


Thinking – Breakfast of Champions. So what did you think and what might you think? It is all about the choices we make,     For the FUN of It! Dr. Scott Simmerman is a designer of… Continue reading

The Weeks of Making Progress


Not published much in a while but LOTS of new haiku and similar things needing to be uploaded. Here are three in my LEGO Square Wheels® series about “the weeks at  hand” and… Continue reading

Poem on Performance Leadership and Innovation


I am trying to keep this both real and simple. It IS about involvement and engagement and it IS about asking for ideas and listening to the answers: So, Don’t Just DO Something,… Continue reading

Listening – a Poem on Performance Improvement


I saw a post about how to be a better manager and it focused on listening to people. Not reading it, I guessed that it says that if you listen to others, you… Continue reading

Happy Thanksgiving Quote for workplace improvement and teamwork


It is Thanksgiving, and we need to take personal responsibility for the choices we make and what happens. So, maybe you can find a use for this little quote / poem from my… Continue reading

Customers – They Feel The Bumps and Thumps


We spend a LOT of money on marketing, generally defined as the effort to attract new customers and retain new customers. But the reality is that we spend a LOT of that money… Continue reading

Play: Never The Same Old Ideas


Some 25 years ago, Randy Ranslaben gave me a name for one of the original line-art Square Wheels illustrations. He called it, “Wheel Time Twaining” and it looks like this: The idea was… Continue reading

Business Haiku on Innovation


This is apparently National Poetry Month, so I pressed up this old line-art Square Wheels illustration with its accompanying haiku: I want to set this up with the LEGO, but I thought to… Continue reading

Poem on Teamwork (and Politics)


Thought you might like this poem on teamwork and organizational behavior as it meshes up with the idea that our wagons are often bogged down in the mud of reality and politics: We… Continue reading

Moron National Employee UN-Appreciation Day


My cynicism continues this morning as I read more about the dis-connection of so many workers as I write on my developing toolkits of Roadblock Management and of Facilitation for Workplace improvement. They… Continue reading

HELP! Please compare two different versions of Square Wheels LEGO


My son, whose old LEGO pieces I have been using, suggested that I make the Square Wheels wagon and scenes out of ONLY legitimate LEGO instead of the hybrid assemblies that I have… Continue reading

Continuous Continuous Improvement – Reality


In a LinkedIn thread, the issue of organizational improvement was raised and I commented about the reality that continuous improvement was something that many managers strive to achieve, once! Too many people simply… Continue reading

Making Improvements in how things work


We tend to approach the workplace as a highly complicated interrelationship of hundreds of twisted systems, policies, procedures and programs. Just the thought of “how to motivate people” will make some managers cringe… Continue reading

Thinking: Beliefs versus Actual Creativity


Most of us are creative and innovative when it comes to solving problems, we really are. But it would also appear that most of us go through a phase where we lose that… Continue reading

It’s not the destination, it’s The Journey: A LEGO Square Wheels Poster


One of my friends popped me this quote by Ralph Waldo Emerson that I thought to posterize. So, I took my poster on the theme of ISOLATION and revamped it with the quote.… Continue reading

Square Wheels LEGO Dr. Seuss Poem on Leadership


This is one of my Dr. Seuss-style poems on organizational leadership and development. Leadership is about knowing that there are many more smart people in your group than you. There are many more… Continue reading

Agile Workplace Practices – A Reality


We hear that “agile” is the new way for a lot of organizations, with the goal of thinking in less constrained ways and in ways to enable better responsiveness on the part of… Continue reading

Innovation: Continuous Continuous Improvement with LEGO and Square Wheels


Someone made a LinkedIn comment about innovation and improvement and I popped in a quip that I thought would be a good poster, so here we go:   Continuous continuous improvement is a… Continue reading

Yes, you CAN be a more engaging leader of teams


You do NOT need to be a professional facilitator of teams in order to generate more intrinsic motivation and engagement. All you need to do is involve people in aligning to the vision… Continue reading

Decision Making with Devil’s Advocate


Challenging decisions and assumptions is a critically important role that is often neglected, given organizational cultures like GM where the “GM Nod” is simply the way of escaping any link to accountability or… Continue reading

Simple Thought on Good Strategic Planning


Lots of data suggest that good strategic planning is different than good strategic planning implementation, and that 90 to 95% of initiatives fail to meet management expectations even though the initial thinking was… Continue reading

Think Working Hard is Making Progress?


I was always told that hard work would generate success. But a simple look around the real world will show one how silly that statement is. It is NOT simply about hard work;… Continue reading

THE REALITY OF CHANGE – A Square Wheels LEGO Poster


One of the cartoons I have used for many years is what I called The Reality of Change. In it, one of the Square Wheels wagon wheels is broken and the team is… Continue reading

Devil’s Advocate – a Square Wheels LEGO Poster about decision-making


I am going to post up a much longer article around the issues of decision-making and the requirement that someone be appointed to a role of simply challenging assumptions. But for the moment,… Continue reading

Trust. Discontent. A Square Wheels LEGO Business Haiku


Here is another business Haiku around the theme of trust, discontent and motivation that I thought you might like. The ideas for improvement are already in the wagon — the cargo — but… Continue reading

Trust – A Business Haiku of Square Wheels and LEGO


Here is another Business Haiku I thought you might like. It’s about the reality of people working together. It is about environmental awareness of managers, not just their focus on productivity and production.… Continue reading

LEGO Business Haiku of Square Wheels Alternative


It’s been a while since I popped up a poem to the poems blog, so here goes a business Haiku I thought you might like. It is about involvement and engagement and perspective… Continue reading

Don’t Just DO Something. Stand There! (A Square Wheels Lego Business Quote)


I got two other business quotes up in this blog today, both using the Square Wheels LEGO version of my main cartoon so I thought to add one more… This is an oft-used… Continue reading

Confidence: A Square Wheels LEGO Business Quote


I saw some Pinterest quotes on a list this morning and I just HAD to do this one: I think that confidence is good, but any strength, taken to its excess, can have… Continue reading

Take Time for a Smoke – a Business Haiku from a non-smoker!


There are issues with pushing the wagon and with pulling the wagon and also issues with smoking. But, I wonder which of these is actually worse for one’s health. Ya think? Don’t Just… Continue reading

FEAR is The Mindkiller – The Litany


I put up a longer blog post you can find it you click on the image below, but here is the quip part of that message relating to: From Frank Herbert’s Dune book,… Continue reading

Possible Potential Possibilities and Continuous Continuous Improvement Haiku


In a collaboration, I generated this, which I like as a quote to stimulate thinking: The round wheels are already in the wagon! Click on the image above to go to the other… Continue reading

Business Haiku – the fun continues…


With the thought in mind that a few people see my poems as somewhat negative, as they frame this in their own thinking and project onto the cartoons, let me offer up a… Continue reading

Teamwork, Communications and Planning – two more poems about work


The “team communications” and agreement cartoon in the boxes below is one that we use a good bit in the debriefing of The Search for The Lost Dutchman’s Gold Mine, since it has… Continue reading

Moments of Team Reflection can generate a New Direction


I have a series of cartoons that focus on reflecting about how things really are. There are 6 of them, each with the theme that you can possibly see new things if you… Continue reading

A Dr. Seuss Poem anchored to a Square Wheels Cartoon – Getting More Done with Fun


Some thoughts on allowing people to play with ideas, and those ideas will transform themselves into a different reality. But it is really hard to innovate when all you do is pull and… Continue reading

Illustrated Steve Jobs quote on Design, with two images


Steve Jobs — not much needs to be said about his influence on design and quality and making things the right way. Here is a quote about design and how to make improvements.… Continue reading

Illustrated Steve Jobs Quote on Innovation


Steve Jobs — not much needs to be said about his influence on design and quality and making things the right way. Here is a quote about the motivation to make improvements and… Continue reading