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Archives For Leadership

Years ago I heard leadership coach and author Bob Biehl say that he loves to collect questions.  That thought intrigued me.  So since that time I’ve been a student and collector of questions.

Lou Holtz once said, “I never learn anything talking. I only learn things when I ask questions.” Questions challenge us to see things from a different perspective and guide us to breakthrough behaviors.  You can be stuck and discouraged in one moment but with the aid of the right question, an instant later you’re flooded with fresh ideas and motivation.

Here are 12 of my favorite questions.  Chew on a few of these today and see what new insights or direction you might discover.

  1. What would a great leader do in this situation?  (Bill Hybels, Pastor Willowcreek Community Church)
  2. What do I believe is impossible to do in my field, but if it could be done, will fundamentally change my business? (Joel Barker, author of Paradigms)
  3. What is the wise thing to do?  (Andy Stanley, Pastor Northpoint Church)
  4. What is the single best measurable indicator that I am making progress toward my dream? Bob Biehl
  5. What are the “elephants” in my schedule? (Pareto said, “If you’re Noah, and your ark is about to sink, look for the elephants first.”) (Don’t know who asked this one but I like it)
  6. How can we become the company that would put us out of business? (Danny Meyer, CEO of Union Square Hospitality Group)
  7. What counts that we are not counting? (Chip Conley, head of global hospitality for Airbnb)
  8. What should we stop doing? (Peter Drucker, management expert and author)
  9. What are the gaps in my knowledge and experience? (Charles Handy, author and management expert)
  10. If we got kicked out and the board brought in a new CEO, what would he do? (Andy Grove, former CEO of Intel )
  11. What advice would you give you if you were in your situation? (Came as a result of me having a pity party about my own situation several years ago)
  12. What questions do you have that you’d like answers to?  (From Action Learning Method)

Here’s one more bonus question, undoubtedly the most important question you can answer, “Who do you say I am? (Jesus, Mark 8:29)

What great question do you like to wrestle with?

 

 

Here are a few of the leadership thoughts I’ve tweeted throughout December.  If you would like to follow me on Twitter you can find me at www.twitter.com/maclake

  • Dec 30, 5:03pm To maximize your leadership potential you cannot depend solely on development from others you must develop the habit of self-development
  • Dec 29, 4:47pm So what do you do when everything you’re doing isn’t working? More of the same is not the answer
  • Dec 28, 4:39pm People avoid that which they’re afraid of. That may explain why some of your staff are not developing leaders #LeadershipDevelopment
  • Dec 17, 6:03pm When you have a mindset of succession you will have a regular practice of multiplication
  • Dec 16, 2:38pm Reading daily will make reading a discipline #personalgrowth
  • Dec 16, 2:20pm Leadership development is about changing the leadership beliefs and behaviors of those your training
  • Dec 13, 9:28am Leadership development should always be done in a way that can be reproduced by the one you’re developing so they can develop others
  • Dec 12, 10:13am What you give ATTENTION to will ADVANCE #leadership
  • Dec 07, 11:31am People value what adds value to them #leadershipdevelopment
  • Dec 05, 1:21pm Collaboration makes you wiser, your team stronger and your organization more effective #leadership
  • Dec 04, 7:38pm There is a talent war raging. Is your organization winning or losing?
  • Nov 26, 8:59am Great intentions don’t produce growth, discipline does. #selfleadership
  • Nov 12, 6:10pm What would you tell you if you were in your situation? #selfleadership

Leaders are visionaries.  They think big, dream big and plan big.  But sometimes the “big” doesn’t happen the way they envision.  So they experience a “big” disappointment.

I don’t want to imply that big is bad, hey I don’t want to follow a leader that doesn’t think big.  But one of the sides of big we don’t think about very often is, big results come with big responsibility. And big responsibility must be stewarded by someone with big character and big competencies.

If a pastor prays that his church will grow to one thousand people then he better have the competency and character it requires to lead a church of level of complexity.  If an entrepreneur wants to expand his business from 1 to 5 franchises then he better have the character required to handle the added pressures and the competency to scale to that size.

Sometimes I think God doesn’t give us “bigger” results because we don’t have the character or competency yet to steward the bigger responsibility. Don’t get in too big a hurry to get to big. And make sure you’re focusing on growing yourself as much as you are growing your organization.