Now Bruce Lee may have intended to illustrate that a wise man is simply more capable of learning. However, I believe that Mr. Lee’s point that we are to reflect on through his wise words is that there lies more power in the art of asking questions and in training the mind to be more inquisitive, than to presume we have all of the answers.
Have you ever noticed that you often hear countless questions from those that often end up implementing the most effective solutions? The meetings and brainstorming sessions that are the most valuable (and exciting) are those where I find myself feverishly jotting down many questions and debating many more questions discussed amongst astute colleagues. The first thing that a curious mind tells us is that someone is paying attention. Very close attention to the details and to how more information will lead to the resolution. That is, of course, if you understand the dynamic nature of how those problem-solvers come up with their clever and potent solutions.
There are far too many people that believe that having all of the answers is the key to being a great leader or one who is seen as the “problem solver”. Quite the contrary. Asking more questions is where useful and purposeful leadership begins. Asking the right questions [and listening to and searching intently for the answers] is how great leaders are born.
It is in the process of obtaining more information, the information that can be most leveraged, that leaders portray just the right mix of art and science. This sometimes eludes the untrained eye and its simplistic brilliance is often overlooked and mistaken for foolishness or even laziness. The questions are intended to lead us to even more questions sometimes. If you have ever deliberately watched this unravel, it is quite illuminating. So do not be afraid to ask more questions, especially if you realize that your question may only lead to…more questions. Far too often, we leave the boardroom having left too many questions unasked.
I will leave you with some great quotes to contemplate on the art of leading with an inquisitive mind…Just a reminder, these quotes are left here not to change you, but to change your thinking and perspective. Thanks for reading and thank you for sharing! Have a great day and do great things!
“Every clarification breeds new questions”
“Judge a man by his questions rather than by his answers”
“Good questions outrank easy answers”
“Good managers have the right answers; great leaders ask the right questions”