Albert Einstein is credited for emphasizing the importance of problem definition by stating “If I had only one hour to save the world, I would spend fifty-five minutes defining the problem, and only five minutes finding the solution.” When working in the engineering field, we aren’t necessarily always thinking of problem solving and problem definition in this way. Throughout your career you will be asked to work on different projects that are not fully defined. Those projects will also need to be accomplished within a specific time frame and within budget. This can compromise the decision-making process to explore solutions prematurely before clearly understanding the problem.
Jordan Robert, Design Engineer at Noble Plastics focuses on how problems are defined and the significance of problem definition to having a successful outcome. She also incorporates lessons learned from her experience working on different product design projects.