How many times a day do you declare a statement about an aspect of your business? Statements such as:
- We must obtain that new client.
- We have to decrease costs in area x.
- I don’t have time to use social media properly (possibly the worst sentence I have ever heard for numerous reasons)
Statements are an end in themselves. Statements get you nowhere but where you are now. Goals are statements 99% of the time. Does this look familiar?
- Achieve lead generation through online marketing by 30%.
Just that… questions! We don’t ask enough questions on a daily basis. As the leader we think that we must make bold statements as it shows some “leadery” crap. (I dunno’, ask the business coaches why you do this).
How Questions Drive Business Growth
Never stop asking questions.
Play the question game
Swap all statements with a question. Here’s some examples to get your thought juices flowing:
- We need to increase sales of product x in Q4 —–> How might changing our sales process, coupled with fresh training allow us to increase sales of product x in Q4?
- We don’t have enough time to develop new ideas —–> Can we train staff better? Can we improve the efficiency of our internal processes? What areas of our work aren’t adding value to the customer experience and the business, and can we substitute that time for collaborative idea generation?
- I don’t have time “to do social media” —–> How important is the use of social networks in our customers lives? Are we spending time trying to communicate with them elsewhere where they are no longer active? What help can I get to improve my use of new technologies?
Spotted the common factor yet?
Questions tend to lead the highlighted need for fresh learning and development in the most important areas of the business.
Training is playing a massive part in the continual development and growth of the smartest companies in the world. Business as usual has changed…dramatically. Outside expert advice could be just the catalyst your business needs to develop the mindset and behavioural techniques to tackle “business as unusual”.
The greatest change however, is that of continual change. The new technologies and behaviours that are so impacting business are in a continual state of testing. As such, the greatest asset that your business must possess is agility in learning.
Agility in learning will be a core part of your businesses growth. Attending one off “how to” courses every 12 months is as pointless as the statements you started with. You need to be doing more.
Here’s 3 tips to kickstart you new found continual learning regime:
- Hire a consultant to work with you for a period of at least 12 months. (“why” is being prepared in another blog post)
- Spend at least 30-45 mins per day reading/watching/listening to content created to solve your particular problems…and action it!
- Complement 1 and 2 with well researched courses and seminars.
Questions, learning, growth – a match made in heaven
Learning happens every hour of everyday. Business and life are a series of experiments, and all experiments start with questions….and produce more questions. Answers cannot lead you to the next level. Answers are an ending, and we don’t want that for your business just yet.
So what questions are you now going to ask yourself and your team?
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