I have a speech in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. I will be working with over a thousand financial advisors. Prior to the program I emailed and communicated with about 15 people that will be in the audience. I asked several questions because I wanted insights through their eyes. I have a pretty good idea of the issues they are facing from my experience and the clients that I worked with in the past, but I wanted up to date information. I wanted to know their specific challenges. I wanted to know their specific successes. I wanted to know what advice they would give others in their industry. I wanted to hear in their words what was happening in their world. That information puts me in a position to where I will be able to better relate to them and make a difference for them.
It’s the same as a leader in building a new organization. We need to ask questions to those people around us and see their view of the world and not just assume that our experiences helped us to know everything. We need to know what our members, or team members are happy with, what they are not happy with. What works? What’s not working? We need to know what they want more information on because by understanding where they are coming from, we can better serve the members of our organization and grow the enterprise. Great leaders ask great questions to the people around them. They take that information and then they deliver the value that’s needed. Not only do we need to ask questions to the people who are developing the organization but we must go to our clients and find out what’s working for them, what’s not working, what they could use, and what they don’t need. It will only help us focus and deliver better value, asking better questions is going to help us grow the organization and be much better leaders.