Situation Appraisal

Break down any situation into specific components, and determine who will do what, and by when.

  • Understand the incident as well as the nature of the user’s or the organizations business need
  • Create a clear and complete list of all incidents related to a particular situation, then clarify all concerns to ensure quick restoration of service
  • Use three key criteria to put the list of concerns in priority order, so action can be taken on the right thing at the right time
  • Plan appropriate action for each concern and assign involvement (including stakeholders) to ensure the most efficient and best outcome
  • Communicate priorities and ownership easily

Decision Analysis

There are decision points in every Incident, and how well those decisions are received affects the reputation of Incident Managers. Decision Analysis is partly about marshaling the facts and partially about gaining the agreement of the stakeholders.

  • Identify mandatory and non-mandatory criteria to be used to audit objectives, identify and evaluate alternatives
  • Use simple-but-robust techniques for comparing performance of alternatives
  • Consider risks associated with alternatives
  • Explore how decisions can be made quickly with the agreement of stakeholders

Potential Problem Analysis

Ensure that all new actions towards restoring service stick. Prevent any new incidents or “aftershocks” from occurring as result of new actions taken.

  • Brainstorm a list of things that could impact the success of a plan or action
  • Put the list in priority order so action can be taken on the right thing at the right time
  • Identify and prevent possible causes, and prepare actions to minimize effects if problems happen, along with triggers to ensure those actions happen only when needed

Problem Analysis

Only a small percentage of incoming incidents typically require finding root cause in order to restore service.

  • Define problem scope through setting up a simple description of the problem then use four key categories of information to precisely describe the problem
  • Create and test hypotheses, then eliminate ones that don’t support known facts
  • Confirm the true cause before taking action to fix it

Questioning and Listening Skills

A common characteristic of an excellent Incident Managers is the high quality of their questioning skills.

  • Explore the characteristics of effective questions, of “Open” and “Closed” questioning techniques and their purposes.
  • The practice and application of two techniques; “Questioning to the Void” and the distinction between “Process” and “Content” questions.
  • Introducing of the advantages of real time trouble shooting documentation. This is to work with the existing documentation threads that include technical, management and chronological.

Additional topics

  • Incident simulations to embed the KT Clear Thinking process so that these new tools become a natural and an effective response to these events.

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