Use any (or all) of these three techniques and tools to conduct a root-cause analysis of the gaps identified in Column 3 and prioritized in Column 4. Only focus on the five priority gaps, beginning with the problem statement listed in Column 3 as the focus for the analysis. Your TCI Hub can provide coaching and advice as you go through this part of the program design process with your team.

  1. Brainstorming

For each gap/problem statement, have the design team develop a list of possible reasons for why things are the way they are and why the problem exists. Make sure each member of the team participates and don’t limit the list while brainstorming the reasons why. Capture these on a flip chart/note pad and then as a group refine the list and then rank order the list based on priority and importance.

  1. The 5-Whys

For each gap/problem statement, have the design team discuss why this situation exists as identified and listed. Use the technique of the 5-whys, asking “why” the situation exists, and then as you come up with the answer, asking “why” again to dig deeper into understanding what is behind the problems. Usually by the time you ask why for the fourth or fifth time, you can begin to identify an actionable cause or causes of the problem, upon which the program can focus.

  1. Fishbone Diagram

Use the Fishbone Diagram to determine the cause and effect of the gaps generated by the brainstorming session. For each of the issues identified in the brainstorming session, work as a team to identify which of the underlying causes might contribute to the reason why behind the gap. State the “reason why” problem at the head of the fish; and then discuss if and how the underlying causes (identified in each of the fish bones) might be responsible. If an underlying cause is responsible, state how it is responsible in the box next to the fishbone. Note: not every underlying cause may be relevant to the particular problem, so not all bones will have associated boxes of statements.

Once you’ve completed the root cause analysis, record your findings in Column 5 of the Gap Analysis Table.