Confirmation bias often can creep into root cause analysis activity. It’s important to understand how this bias, as well as convergent and divergent thinking, can affect problem-solving activities and influence decision making. There’s a four-step process that provides a framework to defeat confirmation bias in problem solving. The author illustrates this process with an example of a manufacturer looking for reasons why a baby food container was cracking and causing problems.
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Excellent thoughts in this article. I would propose two additional thoughts to augment the approach. First, consider including people on the team who have general subject matter knowledge but are sufficiently removed from the problem that they can ask the innocent questions. De Bono, in his book Serious Creativity (HarperCollins, 1993) lists innocence as one of the sources of creativity in lateral thinking. Second, consider the Is-Is Not Matrix (well explained in Nancy Tague's The Quality Toolbox, 2nd Edition (ASQ Quality Press, 2005)). I have used this tool to gather, organize, and analyze facts and data in RCA CAPA situations. It is an excellent tool to enhance team convergent thinking following the Gemba encounters.