The trouble with traditional approaches to people problems is that they assume a straightforward relationship between cause and effect, between a problem and its solution. Now there is a revolutionary yet practical alternative—the solution-focused approach, which sidesteps the search for the causes of the trouble and heads straight for the solution, showing you how to envisage your desired future and move swiftly towards it.
When you need to discover what works at work, The Solutions Focus offers a powerful yet subtle way to positive change.
This second, updated and extended edition of this acclaimed book provides and enhanced focus on coaching and offers fascinating and wide-ranging new case studies illustrating how the ideas are being applied in organisations worldwide, from television companies to government agencies to individual teams.
The Solutions Focus takes you beyond outmoded ideas, replacing over-complicated theories and methods with a dynamic, intensely practical approach that provides the positive outcomes organizations crave, along with fresh learning every time.
The authors show you how to identify what is working in your team or organization and amplify it to make useful changes; to focus on what is possible rather than what is intractable; and how to be solutions focused, not solutions forced. While the method and scope are wide-ranging and comprehensive, the basic principles are simple:
identify what works and do more of it
stop doing what doesn't work and do something different.
The Solutions Focus details a unique SIMPLE way of working that allows bespoke solutions to be invented each time, according to what actually fits the organisation:
Solutions not Problems
Inbetween: the Action is in the Interaction
Make Use of What's There—Not What Isn't
Possibilities: Past, Present and Future
Language: Simply Said
Every Case is Different
Radically pragmatic and proven in many fields, this 'theory of no theory' goes to the heart of what works for people, teams and organisations. Packed with field-tested tools, exercises and case examples, The Solutions Focus will interest everyone interested in practical, innovative workplace solutions—and in doing more with less.
Visit the website at "All good coaches focus on potential, affirmation and solutions. This book is a must. It is simple, easy to read and filled with illustrative examples."—Sir John Whitmore, author of Coaching for Performance
"A focus on solution construction is the core of great coaching. This is a beautifully crafted, elegantly simple approach to applying the power of solutions to organizations—a must-read for coaches and consultants looking for truly effective tools."—Anthony M. Grant, Director, Coaching Psychology Unit, School of Psychology, University of Sydney
"A classic: the most exciting and applicable approach since Fisher and Ury's Getting to Yes. The logic and ethics of the approach are refreshing and unfortunately all too rare in the corporate world where I do most of my work. It makes so much sense to identify and work with what works."—Nancy Caldwell, negotiation consultant, USA
"If we can learn to adopt this solutions-focused way of approaching everyday situations we will transform our work and our lives in elegant and powerful ways. The book is packed with thought-provoking case studies. I love it."—Sue Knight, author of NLP at Work
Paul Z. Jackson is an inspirational consultant, trainer, facilitator and coach. Since graduating from Oxford University, he has been variously a print journalist, a senior comedy producer with BBC Radio 4, founder of the More Fool Us improvisation comedy team, and a university lecturer. He is also the author of Impro Learning, 581/2 Ways to Improvise in Training, and The Inspirational Trainer. His personal website is Mark McKergow is an international consultant and speaker who develops solutions-focused routes for organisational and personal development. He started his career in the electricity industry as a nuclear physicist. He trained at BFTC Milwaukee and MRI Palo Alto, and is in demand as a keynote speaker. He has pioneered the use of solutions-focused methods in organisational and business contexts and is the only British-based person to have been elected to membership of Jack Canfield's Transformational Leadership Council. Find out more about his latest work at