If you are a leader, you understand that questions are always a part of a leader’s life. The issue becomes, who is asking the questions? I can let others ask me the hard and important questions or I can ask those questions of myself. John Maxwell released a book last year entitled, Good Leaders Ask Great Questions: Your Foundation for Successful Leadership. I am working my way through this book this year and have found the questions to help foster self reflection and help me grow as a leader.
Am I Genuinely Interested in Others? This is a question of motivation.
Someone once said, “People have two reasons for doing anything — a good reason and a real reason.” For you and I to be good leaders when dealing with people, the good reason must be the same as the real reason. It’s easy for leaders to lose focus and that’s why we need to check our motives daily. As leaders we are always susceptible to lead out of selfish reasons and seek: power, position, money or prestige.
The apostle Paul, challenged the Philliapians (2:3-4), “Instead of being motivated by selfish ambition or vanity, each of you should, in humility, be moved to treat one another as more important than yourself. Each of you should be concerned not only about your own interests, but about the interests of others as well.”
Naturally gifted leaders have an advantage over others because they typically can see things before others do and often see more than others do. As a result, they enjoy the advantage of good timing and seeing the big picture. We can easily use our leadership gift for personal advantage. Leaders are always in danger of abusing their powers!
Maxwell reminds us that people who look to us for leadership are always asking at least three questions:
1. Can you help me? That is a competence question.
2. Do you care for me? That is a compassion question.
3. Can I trust you? That is a character question.
Remember, questions have power.
Never forget: “Good questions seek information; great questions seek transformation!”
More great questions in my next blog.