If someone asks us a question or asks for our advice, it is amazing how many times we feel that we have to know the answer. Yet sometimes the opposite is true.
The most effective and successful people will not always just give you the answer but will instead ask you really good, smart questions to help you find the answer yourself. When you are given the answer by someone you don’t learn as much as you would if you found that answer for yourself.
We can use Stephen Covey’s insightful thinking:
“Seek first to understand then be understood.”
This may sound like such a simple phrase yet if we apply it, it has a big impact.
If you ask questions you can learn from what the other person is saying and then decide if your answer really was the best answer. Invariably there is a better, enhanced answer after a few open and inviting questions. This allows you to explore more, learn more and indeed get to a better result or solution. It opens you up to be innovative and invites fresh new thinking, which can create new ideas and new thoughts.
As the world moves into more complexity and with even more change ahead, we will find ourselves being a member of many work teams or partnerships where new solutions need to be found. In those constellations we cannot possibly have all the answers or indeed keep up with ALL the changes needed. So we need to work together as a team to find the answers and ask smart questions to get us to the smart answers
Go ahead give it a go today, be ready with your smart questions and get to even smarter answers.
About the authors
Mandy Flint & Elisabet Vinberg Hearn, award-winning authors of ”The Team Formula”.
Their latest book, multi-award-winning ”Leading Teams – 10 Challenges: 10 Solutions”, published by Financial Times International is a practical tool for building winning teams. You can download a free chapter of the book here.
Praise for ”Leading Teams: ”Enjoyable to read. Simple to understand. Practical to implement. A must read for team members or leaders”Debbie Fogel-Monnissen, Executive Vice President, International Markets Finance Officer, Mastercard, NY, USA