What Avatar Can Teach Us About Problem Solving

Problem Solving, Avatar, technologyAvatar focuses on a disabled marine, Jake Sully, who finds a way to walk again with the help of technology. This new tech links him to an “avatar”  of an alien race. The marine is conflicted with helping his new world and his own human world.

Sully’s mission was to infiltrate the alien race by using the tech because he looked like them. He instead accomplished his mission by thinking and not solely relying on technology.

He did this in three steps: Define the problem. Create your objective. Implement the change.

Today,technology is the center of our culture. Day in and day out we are plugged into our smartphones, email, social accounts, and getting the latest news delivered to our fingertips.

We are so engulfed in new tech that we often overlook problems and think we can buy some new software to fix all our problems. Technology can fix a lot of things but not everything.

How exactly did Sully do this?


Step One: Analyze the current situation, see if it is something that needs managing or fixing.. You need to truly understand a problem to fix it.

Sully took a step back from his mission and realized he had to change his thinking. He realized that he had to fix his attitude and behavior to accomplish his mission.


Step Two: Create an objective (what you want to accomplish) then plan it out. Step 2 is often overlooked. Ask yourself what are you really looking to accomplish? Is there anything you want to avoid?

Easy. Sully wanted to avoid being treated like an outsider. To accomplish this he had to embrace their culture.


Step Three: Implement the solution, see the success. Use it as a learning tool to solve your next problem more efficiently.

Sully hunted with them, slept with them and partook in their day to day activities. He had successfully found the tree with the resources he was sent to get. Spoiler alert- Sully later had a change of heart and realized he didn’t want to cause destruction to the alien planet but that’s a different story.


In business when you are faced with a problem use the three step process to guide you in creating a solution.

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