Last updated on 31 October 2023.
This article will give you an insight into what are problem statements for businesses, problem statement examples, how to write a problem statement and many more questions that entrepreneurs have regarding problem statements.
Before discussing problem statement examples, just a quick brief introduction to what is a problem statement in a business? A problem statement defines the problem faced by a business and also identifies what the solution would look like. Businesses are usually created on the basis of solving problems that exist amongst consumers.
A problem statement can be seen as the starting point for coming up with a product vision. In defining the problem statement for your startup or business, be sure to include these elements:
1. The Problem: What is the issue plaguing the organization?
2. Who It Affects: Indicate the entities that are affected by the issue. This can be a group of stakeholders or an organization.
3. Impact: What is the impact or consequence of the issue?
4. Solution: Include your recommendation for solving the issue.
A problem statement should be written in businesses and other organisations, writing a problem statement is an important step in improvement projects. A clearly defined and well-understood issue is crucial to finding and implementing effective business solutions. In this case, the problem statement is usually a stand-alone document.
Writing a problem statement should help in careful decision-making for the existence of your business, and the reasons for its operation. The problem statement will serve as the basis for the introductory section, directing the reader’s attention to the issues that your proposed business plan will address. A problem statement is a communication tool.
Problem statements are important to businesses, individuals and other entities to develop projects focused on improvement. Whether the issue is pertaining to badly-needed road work or the logistics for an island construction project; a clear, concise problem statement is typically used by a project’s team to help define and understand the issue and develop possible solutions.
These statements also provide important information that is crucial in decision-making in relation to these projects or processes. A problem statement can be identified by noticing the following measure in all problem statement examples:
There are several problem statement examples. Let’s use the example of Netflix, who initially solved the issue people had while having to travel to the video store to rent a movie.
Netflix sought to avoid video stores altogether and instead deliver movies in an envelope to your mailbox, allowing you to keep the movie as long as you’d like. Netflix’s problem statement would probably look something like this:
“Going to the video store is a pain. People don’t like travelling back and forth just to rent a movie and they hate paying late fees even more.”
A simple interpretation of problem statement examples (taking Netflix in the example) will be portrayed as the following as well:
Problem: “Going to the video store requires fighting traffic, wandering the aisles, and waiting in long lines just to get a single movie.”
Solution: “Netflix allows anyone to enjoy thousands of titles streamed directly to their home or delivered to their mailbox.”
In just two sentences you have given a potential investor an easy-to-digest problem/solution statement. Problem statement examples like that of Netflix are simple yet straight to the point.
Good problem statement examples focus entirely on the issue so that the audience can build a powerful case for that issue and accept the solution that the business is trying to provide.
Problem statement examples also include Facebook for instance. Harvard had a Facebook of their own when Mark Zuckerberg was studying there. His frustration was that “he could only search and look at people’s information on the university’s Facebook and not perform any sort of social interactions (liking, commenting etc.)”. His objective was to create a platform where members can search for people according to their interests and can create an online network of friends/study groups.
There are certain components and elements of a good problem statement. All great problem statement examples are comprised of the following components. There are four key elements you should include when writing a problem statement:
Apart from these tips, check out our article for detail on how to write a problem statement for your business with more problem statement examples.
One is to identify and explain the problem in a concise but detailed way to give the reader a comprehensive view of what’s going on. This includes identifying who the problem impacts, what the impacts are, where the problem occurs and why and when it needs to be fixed.
Another purpose of the problem statement is to clarify what the expected outcomes are. Establishing what the desired situation would look like helps provide an overarching idea about the project. The proposed solution and scope and goals of the solution are made clear through this statement.
The problem statement provides a guide for navigating the business once it begins. It is continually referenced throughout the duration of the business to help the team remain focused and on track. Near the full establishment of the business, this statement is again referred to in order to verify that the solution has been implemented as stated and that it does indeed solve the initial problem.
This can help in making sure that proper steps are being taken to prevent the same problem from happening again in the future and to provide room for continuous improvement within the business through innovation. It serves as a guide and a checklist to ensure that all objectives of the business are being met.
To conclude this article, all the good problem statement examples have a list of do’s and don’t’s that businesses consider.
A problem statement describes the problem faced by an organisation and also identifies what the solution would look like. It can also establish a foundation for building compelling business cases and proving the necessity for specific projects. Before your business advertises a solution, make sure the customers are aware of the problem that you are solving, which is conveyed through your problem statement.