Today’s topic on the ABC’s of Engineering Your Business is a familiar theme – Questions.
If you’ve been around the podcast for any length of time you’ve seen this pop up in the areas of curiosity, problem solving, the 5 Why’s and more.
But questions are truly one of the unsung heroes of the business world. Like so many other tools we discuss, it doesn’t cost anything to ask more and better questions.
And in asking those questions, with a an end goal of learning and collaborating to a common goal, you find that you’re able to make better decisions, save time, money, empower your people, and send yourself down a better track.
The first step is asking more questions. Not being OK with answers given you but being an investigator, digging deeper and turning over the rocks.
In doing this, though, let me add a word of caution. Do this with respect and humility. Please.
I’ve been around plenty of people who love to ask questions of others in a way that is belittling and condescending. Doing this doesn’t help anyone and will actually shut off communication and potential.
Instead, if we’re willing to ask from a place of genuinely valuing the person we’re talking to and genuinely wanting to listen and learn from their answers, we can go a long way to strengthening our teams and plugging gaps in our businesses.
Along with asking more questions comes asking better questions. This parts takes a little more work. One way to start is just by being curious and asking follow-up questions. Especially if you can step outside what you already know and ask what an outsider might ask. Sometimes we don’t ask good questions because we’ve already answered them in our own head, but we can easily miss something that can be our downfall.
Create a culture where it is common to ask more and better questions and where people don’t have to feel defensive being questioned. If the questions come from a place of caring and curiosity, they will naturally come off in a way that doesn’t create a defensive response. Not so if they come from a place of pride or position.
What keys do you have to foster this kind of a culture? I’d love to hear them. Shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you’ve been enjoying the podcast, consider telling a fellow entrepreneur or business leader about it. I appreciate you and would love to know any future topics you’d like me to cover or how I can help you and your business. Email me at email@example.com