01 May Get To Better Solutions By Asking Better Questions
What You Focus On Expands
When we focus on a problem or challenge, the solution is often hard to come by, yet the problem is still there, so what is the answer? The answer is to ask good questions.
Under normal circumstances, two useful leadership traits to have are curiosity and openness. However, they are especially amazing traits to tap into when solving a problem. Being curious about the problem and being open to different perspectives, can lead to ideas that you might never have considered otherwise.
To truly tap into the power of questioning, it makes sense to gather two or three people who have no experience with your challenge, and thus have a different perspective from yours. They don’t have any attachment to an outcome, and without an emotional charge, everything is fair game. Even if it’s only you, this is a great tool to use.
There is one important rule when holding a QuestionFest.
Only questions are allowed. Anyone who offers a solution, should be reminded of the rule. Anyone who offers some kind of explanation of their question, will also be reminded. That goes for you too!
QuestionFest Process (It’s simple!)
- You take 1-2 minutes to lay out the problem. Why is it a problem and how would things be better if it was solved. (No selling of any current ideas – stick to the facts.)
- Then, for only 3-4 minutes, as many questions as possible are thrown out and written down verbatim for later contemplation. (You can do steps 1 and 2 with a couple of different groups, if desired.)
- On your own, study the questions, looking for those that reframe the problem and give you a new vantage point.
It will take some practice because we are taught that our value comes in having the answer. The better you get at asking questions, the better leader you will become. Instead of giving your team members (including your family team) the answer, you will empower them to identify the solution that works best for them. Often it will be something that you would have never thought of!
Would you like one of the High5 team to participate in a QuestionFest with you? We would love to! Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will make it happen.