At the end of most episodes of Seth Godin’s Akimbo podcast, they run an ad for the altMBA that includes a great line from T.K. Coleman that includes the quip that “there is no great thought leader who can outthink the internet“. While I personally work hard to have many answers available in my head, the real benefit is generating more questions.
Asking more questions is a great thing to do. It helps uncover missing pieces or makes us view things a bit differently. Even better, the right questions can help uncover pieces that no one even knew were missing.
In a recent blog post by Seth, though, he took it even a level deeper:
Rarest of all is the person with the humility (and confidence) to realize that even the list of questions can remain elusive. Finding the right questions might be the very thing we need to do.
If you’re not sure how to find more of the right questions, the “5 Whys” can be a good tool to help get there, and it’s super easy. Ask a basic question, follow it with “why?”, and keep asking “why?” to every answer. It can be a road that leads to sounding like a curious two-year-old, but if done correctly it can uncover great things.
Here’s a quick example showing how that might work:
Having the right answer is great, but having the right question can be even better.