Client Case Study: “Problem Solving”

Aged 30, Caroline experienced a traumatic brain injury and, after a few months of rehab, thought she was ready to return to work as an office manager for a busy publishing company. She felt well supported by her manager and her colleagues but was surprised to hear from them that she had made a number of errors.

They reported that she wasn’t very time efficient—she seemed to be ‘going
round the houses’ instead of taking the most logical or direct route.
Previously, if someone came to her with a query, she would very quickly
be able to point them in the right direction. Now, however, she was
directing them to one thing after another until she seemingly stumbled
across the correct solution. She would often make the same mistake
repeatedly and appear not to notice; or, if she did notice, she often
wasn’t able to come up with alternative solutions. Her colleagues
felt that she was less creative in her thinking than before.

She was referred to Emma by her case manager and, together, Emma
and Caroline worked out what the problems seemed to be and
developed some simple strategies to help. By using a simple form to
help guide her through the problem solving process and by asking
her colleagues to provide immediate and direct feedback, Caroline
was gradually able to alter the way that she worked so that she was
more time efficient and productive.

Caroline continues to use the same tools outside of work to help
her deal with more challenging situations.