Last weekend I walked into the bathroom to see water leaking from the ceiling all over the floor. After freaking out for 3 - 5 minutes, I got control of myself and started thinking calmly about what to do next.
First, IDENTIFY THE PROBLEM: there is water falling from the ceiling. Ok, that’s done.
Now for a solution…SHORT TERM FIX FIRST: Put towels on the floor. Yes, water was still dripping but I had taken steps to address the immediate need - get the water off the floor!
Next, I had to find out why this was happening. Ok. GATHER MORE INFORMATION: I looked in the attic - the water heater is there. Aha. A pipe hooked to the water heater is spraying water into the attic. Thank goodness, problem identified. What do I do now? First, more towels, this time place at the water heater. Did I mention that I also put some gray masking tape over the hole? What would we do without gray masking tape?!?
LONGER TERM FIX: I don’t know how to fix this problem. CONTACT A PROFESSIONAL: I quickly called a trusted plumber! The plumber came over and the problem was solved in less than 1 hour!!!
PLAN FOR THE FUTURE: The ceiling has to be repaired but that can wait. And maybe the water heater should NOT be in the attic. This is an even longer term solution that will require LOTS of money. But for now, I’ve fixed the immediate problem and there is hot water for a shower!!
You can apply these steps to solve problems/issues in your organization. Here is a recap:
1. Identify the problem
2. Find a short-term solution
3. Gather more information
4. Identify a longer term fix
5. Involve professionals as necessary
6. Create a longer-term plan for the future
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