tina legor problem space advisor

Tina Legor is a senior creative advisor at Open – she is the head of Open’s event panel, and with a solid track record of campaigns executed, is a trusted advisor on client projects. Tina has a knack for seeing the bigger picture: why we are doing what we are doing. Below, Tina shares some key lessons on the importance of staying in the problem space.

tina legor problem space advisor

Tina Legor is a senior creative advisor at Open – she is the head of Open’s event panel, and with a solid track record of campaigns executed, is a trusted advisor on client projects. Tina has a knack for seeing the bigger picture: why we are doing what we are doing. Below, Tina shares some key lessons on the importance of staying in the problem space.

Personal best - staying in the problem space

By: Tina Legor, Senior Creative Advisor (25 June 2019)

What’s the starting point for thinking about the problem space in internal communications?

We are advisors and need to see the bigger picture before going into solutions. We advise our clients and help them solve their specific internal communication needs. That's our purpose. So why do we need to stay in the problem space? We could just pull a solution from the catalogue, right? Also, why is it so difficult – to keep asking and figuring out what we’re solving? Both for us, and for our clients?

Good questions, can you try to answer some of them?

Yeah, let’s start with the first one: ‘Why do we need to stay in the problem space?’ – we can’t advise if we don’t ask several why’s and look at the bigger picture. It’s like working with no limits and creativity lives in the problem space.
The fear of failure often cripples creativity and you step out of the problem space and jump into quick solutions. But failure is more likely if you are too hasty to leave the problem space –so, jump onboard because the problem space is wide open until you close it. Work with no limits and keep on thinking and innovating. Define your goals before you leave the problem space otherwise it’s just production and it might not create great value for the client. In addition, once you have looked deep enough into the problem, the solutions are pretty much formed in the process”.

So why is it so difficult to do?

We often get clients asking for specific deliverables – and this is pretty natural. They’ve already arrived at a solution before calling us. If they want a video, we can jump right to it and create a beautiful film, storytelling and all. People may view it several times and share it on SoMe and everybody will sing hallelujah. But we missed out the fun time in the problem space, and don’t know if we are doing the right thing. We’ve spent no time discussing the big W’s – we’ve most likely done a pretty good video that creates a little extra engagement, but solves nothing.

Can you give me an example of a success with the problem space?

Yes of course. We recently had a great process with a client - it is still ongoing. We have together spent quite a bit of time plotting out all the initiatives on the communications agenda for the years ahead and strengthened the link between the strategy and values, mission and purpose. We’ve defined the main groups of stakeholders across the organization and defined what we wish to achieve through communication initiatives with the different groups - where we believe they are now, and where we wish them to move – and how best we move them there. This process has given us and the client a good overview of the coming years and together we have created a clear roadmap of what we wish to achieve and a process map on how to achieve it. This has been a really rewarding process.

Could you break that down into some concrete actions?

It’s a team effort and it isn’t done overnight. A great starting point is to ensure that you have the right people with the right knowledge involved at client side as well as the project team at the agency. It could look something like this:
  • What is the business need behind communicating ie. why are we doing this?
  • Make the link between your project and the organization’s big view
  • Define your stakeholders – recipients of your communication efforts.Where are they now, where do you want to move them; how do you best reach them – why do you need to reach them?
  • Get an overview of what else is on the communication agenda and plan accordingly
 By doing this, we can formulate strong goals for the project. This also creates something to look back to when you’re in the thick of a project, and you may be questioning why things are happening a certain way.As a creative advisor, this gives me a broader view and perspective of the client and with this in mind, I can demonstrate the value of what I am doing. Now I can step out of the problem space and deliver solutions that fit the whole communication purpose. The goal is to get everyone connected to what we’re creating and build excitement from that. boy flying wings