“Enlightenment lies not in the answers, but in the questions.” ~ Socrates
I don’t recall who I first heard say this, but it is worth saying again. “If you don’t like the quality of the answers you are getting, ask better questions.” Asking great questions is a skill we should all work to attain.
Good questions help build good relationships, help you grow and develop, and allow you to go further in developing your potential. All the great leaders down through history asked great questions.
What questions are you asking? Or, do you spend so much time talking that you never really ask good questions. As football coach, Lou Holtz said, “I never learn anything talking. I only learn when I ask questions.” If you really want to demonstrate that you value another person, ask good questions. Then listen deeply to their answers!
The greatest leader who ever lived, Jesus was a master at asking probing questions. I know that often we fear looking dumb by asking questions, but as the old Chinese proverb says, “He who asks questions will appear a fool for a minute. He who does not ask questions is a fool for life.”
Now, you need to understand that I am not talking about asking simplistic or surface questions. I live in the South of the USA, and down here we have a greeting that falls into that category. We greet people with, “How you doing?” We don’t expect or even want an answer to that question. In fact, we probably don’t even care how your doing!! BTW, I am working on not using that greeting, but it still pops out on occasion. That is not the kind of questions I am talking about.
Ask questions that are open-ended. Ask next level questions that take the person deeper into the topic. Ask questions that drive to motivation, desire, and understanding. Don’t assume you know the answer, and give your undivided attention while they answer.
Regardless of your profession, learning to ask great questions will help you raise your game. By asking questions you discover needs and desires, and then you can offer your services or products that help the customer solve their problems.
I challenge you to work on asking better questions. For today and tomorrow, resist the temptation to talk about what you know, and find out what others know. You will learn a lot, build better relationships, and have more success.
What caught your attention with this posting? What action steps will you take? I would love to hear from you on this, so leave a comment and let me learn things.
Make Yours A Great Day!
P.S. – For all who sign up for this Blog, you will receive an offer from me to try me out with a complimentary 30 minute coaching session on the topic/issue you choose. No strings attached. Just my way of saying thank you for subscribing.