Ask What instead of Why


Today, I read an interesting article from Harvard Business Review around Self Awareness.

As a leader, Self Awareness is considered to be a necessary skill that helps to make you more effective as a leader.

The article finds that there are broadly two types of Self Awareness. Internal Self Awareness, how we see ourselves and External Self Awareness, how other people see us.

Some key points for me about the article is that:

  • We need to find balance between both Internal and External Self Awareness
  • Continuously ask for feedback
  • Ask “What?” instead of “Why?” – Asking “What?” allows you to remain solution focused.

Robin, a customer service leader who was new to her job, needed to understand a piece of negative feedback she’d gotten from an employee. Instead of asking “Why did you say this about me?,” Robin inquired, “What are the steps I need to take in the future to do a better job?” This helped them move to solutions rather than focusing on the unproductive patterns of the past.

For more information, click through to the full article.

Until next time!

Source: What Self-Awareness Really Is (and How to Cultivate It)