The Danger of Hiring a “Problem Solver”

Andrew Conrad, MBA
Apr 9, 2018 · 2 min read
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I can certainly understand managers that are reluctant to hire “problem solvers”.

Firstly, hiring one means admitting that you likely have some problems or at the very least, challenges (or if you are really into lack of transparency, opportunities) — and not everyone has the courage for that.

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Secondly, “problem solvers” tend to be more independent and opinionated, and are less “manageable” (yours truly included). They “dare” to raise issues and are reluctant to leave alone problems that management refuses to perceive or address openly. Occasionally, a problem is acknowledged and a “problem solver” is called into the trenches for his/her unique skills. Then the utmost effort is applied to bring the above mentioned problem solver back into the fold.

Does that mean problem solvers have no place in the corporate world (not everyone is built for freelance life)? Definitely not! At least I don’t think that is true.

There are managers around that are capable of behaving as leaders. The world is changing, forcing the corporate world to change as well. It may not be changing as rapidly as the freelance world, but changing slowly has upside as well. It can lead to better stickiness and more thoroughly thought-out solutions to problems.

I know the freelance work will always be there, but there is something special about jumping into the sinking boat and working to fix things from the inside. An outside freelancer will never have the same motivation as someone on the inside. The challenge and the risk are much more real, and the more real the danger, the sharper the creative mind becomes in cohesion with a strong team.

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