A Complete Guide on How to Build a Fishbone Diagram

When we are working on different projects, we make different mistakes that can bring difficulties to the projects. A Fishbone diagram can help you in this regard by helping you to find the root cause of the problems.

Best Online Gantt Chart Software

Different problems arise during the project completion that you need to address the time before it ruins all your effort. It is possible to track the problem and fix it by identifying the causes and root causes.

The root causes of the problem let the manager decide what kind of the problem is and what he needs to do to fix it. For this purpose, the project manager needs to move in a backward manner step-by-step and identify the core problem and causes behind it. It will help him to fix the problem and avoid repeating it next time in other projects. 

A Fishbone diagram can help you in this regard by helping you to find the root cause of the problem. A Fishbone diagram is easy to draw if you properly understand what a Fishbone diagram is, how to build a Fishbone diagram and how it can help you in your project. 

What is a Fishbone diagram?

Before you dive into the detailed steps to learn how to build a Fishbone diagram, you need to briefly introduce the Fishbone diagram. The managers seek help from the Fishbone diagram to track the causes of problems happening in the projects. 

The Fishbone diagram is also famous with other names like the causes and effects diagram, Ishikawa diagram, and Herringbone diagram. The Fishbone diagram helps the project manager look back into the processes that he and his team made during the project completion by drawing out the backbone structure of fish in groups. 

In this way, the project managers can identify the groups of causes of problems and then the roots cause of the problem that leads to other causes to create a problem. Most project managers use the Fishbone diagram parallel to many other project management tools. If you are looking for such a magic wand to trap the root causes of the problems of your project, you need to learn how to build a Fishbone diagram. 

How to Build a Fishbone diagram?

Looking forward to the solution to problems you face in your project? Yes, it is possible to go around the problem, find its cause, and then look for the solutions. So, here is the proper guide for building a Fishbone diagram that will surely help you move backward step by step and identify the root causes. 

Identify the problem 

When you are working on a project and looking forward to the expected outcomes, but you do not get them, it is highly alarming and needs a solution. Do you think it is possible to find the solution when you do not know what the problem behind the inefficiency of the product is? Never! You will not find the solution before tracking the problem. 

A Fishbone diagram helps you to look back on the past steps you have made during the project completion. By looking backward, you can go through every step you and your team took while working on the project. On the way to reverse the process, you can get the points where you or your team made a mistake. 

Define problem statement 

When you have gone through the procedure of project management and identified the problem, you need to define the problem statement. You must write the problem statement as we write our mission statement so you can remember which thing you are going to deal with. 

Collection of different causes of the problem 

Problems are never created themselves. There are different factors or causes leading to the genuine problem. Usually, the causes behind the problem are not visible. You need to dive deeply into the problem and grab the causes behind it. 

You will find many types of causes that seem to be leading to this problem, but all are not effective to the same extent. So, you need to take a view of the causes so that you can identify the one that is creating the problem to a high extent by creating maximum obstacles. 

Take out the root causes of the problem.

Do you think all factors can have the same impact on creating a problem for the product you have made? Obviously, the answer is no. Among the groups of causes behind the problem, some factors are leading the problem with intensive rate and making huge blunders. Sometimes, you are losing the trust of your customers due to these undefined problems. 

By comparing the causes with relevant problems and finding the extant or probability with it, you can filter the root cause. So, you need to extract the most intense cause so that you can treat it wisely by developing useful strategies. 

Move forward with planning. 

The last step after moving backward and identifying the root cause of the problem is to move forward so that you can develop strategies for solving the problems. When you have learned how to build a Fishbone diagram, you can plan better and find the best alternative by removing the previous one that was causing the problem. 

Scenarios appealing to use Fishbone diagram 

The new project managers are confused about how to build a Fishbone diagram and when to use it. No worries, here is the proper guide to looking for the scenarios that when you can use a Fishbone diagram and in what way. 

When you are looking for a problem statement 

Sometimes, when we are working on a project, we get stuck somewhere, and we do not know the reasons. It is quite a frustrating thing a project manager is facing and trying to fix, but it is not possible to sort out when you do not know the cause behind the problem. The Fishbone diagram helps you to look for the problem statement instead of working in the wrong direction. 

When you do not know the causes behind the problem 

Sometimes, when you and your team are working even with proper planning, you face trouble in moving forward, and the processes go in the wrong direction. To deal with such scenarios, you need to learn how to build a Fishbone diagram. It will help you to know the root causes of the problem you are facing. 

When you want problem-solving strategies

When you learn about how to build a Fishbone diagram, you will come to know how this diagram is effective in solving the problem. As you can identify the causes and then extract the root cause of the problem through a Fishbone diagram, you can now develop the problem-solving strategies as well. 

When you want quality improvement 

If you are looking for quality products for your project, you need to dive deeply into the ocean of causes behind the problem. When you do so, you will find room for improvement by trapping the causes of the problem, and you can improve the areas which need amendments. 

How does building a Fishbone diagram can bring advantages to a project manager?

When a project manager gets a complete guide on how to build a Fishbone diagram, he can get maximum advantages to form it instead of ruining his time and cost. By going backward throughout the project management process, the project manager can enjoy the following benefits. 

Helps to create a problem statement 

When you are working on a project, you will be facing different problems, and you need to fix them. But how to fix them when you do not know what to do and about what? A Fishbone diagram helps you to define the problem statement that keeps you reminded that what you are trying to fix and how much time you need to fix it. 

Helps to grab multiple causes 

Using the Fishbone diagram, you are moving backward by recalling the steps of the project you and your team have taken. It helps you to gather multiple causes behind the problems that help you further in the categorization of the extent to cause of a problem. 

Extraction of root cause 

A project manager extracts the root cause of the problem from a huge pile of causes. This would help you to look deep inside the factors that were creating a mess to your product and letting you lose the customers or users. 

Helps to generate potential ideas 

After knowing the root cause of the problem, you can carve the way to progress. So, a Fishbone diagram helps you to generate different creative ideas for trapping the root cause and bringing about amendments.

Keeps you focused 

You are not going to move left, right, or Zig Zag manner to track the causes behind the problem by using a Fishbone diagram. When you build a Fishbone diagram, you are more focused on your goal of identifying the causes of the problem and solution as well. 

Conclusion 

This complete guide on how to build a Fishbone diagram helps the project manager to filter the root cause of the problem from a huge pile of factors and then generate wonderful ideas to fix it.

Want to discover more?

Try Instagantt  for free for your remote team
Get started for free