Problem Solving

The scenarios below demonstrate some of the problem solving activities in which communication professionals engage.  They are presented as they could be used with students to develop problem solving skills.

Advertising an Ethics Problem
A local auto detailing business has approached you to produce their new ad campaign that centers around the concept, “How fresh is your ride?” They eagerly suggest a visual of a pine tree air freshener hanging from the mirror of a classic car.  They describe an image that includes photography of the owner’s prized 1968 mustang convertible.  You are aware that the “little trees” pine tree air freshener symbol is a trademark of the Car Freshener Corporation, which strongly defends their trademark rights.  How would you work with this client towards developing this campaign?
Notes to self: This problem can be approached from many angles:

The goal would be to have students follow through on one approach in depth.


Logo Fitting Problem
Your sign shop is planning to bid on an RFP to produce signage for a new retail outlet in a strip mall.  The project includes two illuminated signs – one on the storefront (3’X8’) and one on the marquis sign at the roadside (2’X4’).  The client is “Tags” and their logo is
Tags logo
Notes to self:
This project creates both a visual problem AND suggests a need to discuss or choose not to discuss that problem when presenting a design solution to the customer.


Sheet Feeder Jam Instruction Writing Problem
You are writing the copy for a poster on how to clear a jammed sheet of paper from the page feeder of our classroom scanner. The poster would hang above the equipment and serve as a resource for people using the machine.  A major problem with this sort of writing is identifying the parts that have to be worked with.  Find five parts that are critical to the process of clearing a sheet feeder jam, give each a name that users will be able to connect with, and write a one sentence description of the part to further connect the reader to the equipment.  Shown below are two illustrations that might support this writing. You may also use the actual machine as a source of information. 
Scanner 1Scanner 2



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