The methods of the magic
My philosophy towards problem solving is based on how any given set of resources can be applied to any given situation. No matter who you are, where you are or what you are dealing with; there are issues that affect every organization from the largest to the not-so largest.
The right tool for the right job
Anyone can have a hammer but that doesn't make you a craftsman. You must use the right tool for the right job. A toothbrush and a mop are both effective cleaning tools. Although you could clean a kitchen floor with a toothbrush; would you want to invest that amount of time, effort, resources? At the same time I wouldn´t brush my teeth with a mop, it's just not my style. Often when it comes to computers and technology certain tools are heralded as the all-in-one wonder. Now I have to admit, I´ve used a butter knife as a screwdriver and a shoe for a hammer. But if I have to nail something precisely or deal with a tricky screw head, I´ll opt to save myself some time and energy by using the proper tool.
Establish the timetable
There is a saying that goes something like "If you don´t have time to do it right, when will you have time to do it over?" In my world time is the most precious of all commodities. Money comes and money goes but time is forever. You can't spend a week in a bank vault and come out with nine days interest. It is important to understand when a solution MUST be in place. Once you understand the deadline you can work backwards to determine when things must occur.
Take account of your resources: manpower, time, money and equipment/technology. Once you see the strengths in your system you can then strengthen the weaker points in your system. Getting the most out of you resources can be the difference between faliure and success.
Exceed the expectation
Let me reveal a problem to you. I'm what you might call compulsive, although I don't obsess over it. I know that no human being is perfect, no matter how hard you try. To me the point is that you try. Even though a basketball player will probably not shoot free throws with a 100% success rate, doesn't the basketball player attempt to make EVERY free throw shot successful? Even if that player make 40 shots in a row, the moment a shot is missed disappointment is inevitable when a goal you've set isn't met. I'm sure disappointment will be short-lived by the basketball player that wants a 100% free throw shot success rate and only gets 92% or 88%. As far as I'm concerned even 80% is beyond the expectation of most people, certainly above average. If you reach for the stars, you will surely get a good portion of the sky.