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Leadership: Ask Better Questions

I hate calling tech support for computer problems. I'm sure you can relate. It is a frustrating experience sitting on the phone waiting forever and then when someone does emerge to help you language barriers often prevent a free flow of quality information.


While sitting on the phone today I began to think about the process of tech support and how it relates to leadership.


Fast forward.


Fixing the issue is the easy part. The guy on the other end of the phone says press this button – turn this knob – cha ching it works!


Takes about 2 minutes.




But getting to that 2 minute fix is worse than enduring a root canal without Novocain. It takes sometimes hours of communication and testing to locate the problem.


As a leader – most of your time is spent communicating with your team and isolating the true problems and challenges. The "fixes" are most often simple solutions. The biggest challenge you will face as a leader is not finding the correct answer – it is asking the right questions.


Ask better questions.


- Joel Mark Witt



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Taken on August 25, 2008