In This Chapter
Reviewing and filtering given information
Identifying and seeking out needed information
Staying organized and checking your results
Math problems may look different from each other, but they're surprisingly similar. Many of the math questions you encounter in a particular career come up over and over again. For example, a graphic artist doing book design calculates cover dimensions, spine width, and margins many times for different books. Also, many similar math questions come up in all careers, especially questions about time and money.
Regardless of your field, you have to solve the math questions you come across, and this chapter gives you the principles to do just that. You may not use all of the principles all the time, but you'll use a good portion of them. Think of Sherlock Holmes, the greatest detective of all time. He investigated many different kinds of mysteries, but he consistently applied the same excellent reasoning.
Know what you're trying to find. Often, the instructions clearly state what the problem is asking you to find, but sometimes the needed answer is a little obscure. People are people. They aren't perfect, and their communication with you isn't always perfect either. Here are a few guidelines for determining what the problem is asking for:
If you get an e-mail or a memo, read it carefully — twice — to make sure you've got a handle on all the facts it includes. ...