Successful Leaders Ask Questions!
There is an imperative that all successful leaders follow and that is that they are constantly and consistently asking questions. They question everything even when, and particularly when, the answers are ‘apparently’ obvious.
Successful leaders look behind the curtains, they take off the covers, they open the locked boxes… They look for what’s hidden because they know that what’s hidden can hurt their company, their projects and their organizations goal achievement.
Effective leaders understand that there is power in the first of the 3-Step ASK Process outlined in my book Ask, Seek, Knock. If you didn’t get that… then Step 1 is Ask… and questions are the main tool that is used!
Questions are empowering because they open a space within our minds, emotions and consciousness where other possibilities, other paths and other options reside.
The philosophical master key underlying this method is that if we can ask the question then there must be an answer. And the prerogative of every executive is to find answers and solutions – then take the necessary action. Your challenge then, is to find and receive the answers to your questions. But, first you must ask the questions. If you don’t ask you will not get. If you don’t seek, you will not find.
Questions impose on us a demand for being fully conscious: A demand to be aware of where we are, what we are doing, what we are feeling and sensing, and how we are thinking. They force us to confront and face ourselves…. and to face the challenges and opportunities that executives tackle every day.
Questions position us to move. However, it is critical that we understand that questions do not always force us to move. Moving forward should be the mantra of every leader who wants to be nimble and flexible so that he or she can address the massive changes which are overtaking every organization.
Some questions may keep us stuck in the very circumstances from which we are trying to extricate ourselves. In a negative way, this demonstrates the awesome power of questions and is an important fact to examine in depth particularly if you are making solving difficult problems and making critical decisions.
The natural tendency of life is to move: forward… upward… or outward. The natural tendency of life is also to develop and grow and blossom. When you go the garden and you notice that the tomato plants are stunted, that they are neither flowering nor bearing fruit, you at once realize that there is something wrong.
This realization occurs because you know that under normal circumstances, plants will grow, flower and bear fruits. If its growth is stunted, the leaves are dull and lackluster, and the stems are small and dry, then you know that the plant is ‘stuck’. Anything that stops the natural forward process is in reality exerting a powerful negative, hindering or retarding influence over the plant.
If questions can keep you stuck, then questions can also help you to get unstuck, prevent you from becoming stuck, and move you forward. At CaribCoaching we teach you how not to use questions which keep you stuck, stunted and lackluster. We help you focus on how to use questions in the right way, to survive and then thrive, to develop personal and leadership astuteness, and be a successful supervisor, manager or business executive.