Are you asking the right question?

Are you asking the right question?

Innovation is about finding better ways of doing whatever it is you do.

As we know, a good definition of innovation is “Change that adds value”. Embracing this term opens the way to make innovation a relatively straight-forward exercise, providing you are asking the right question.

How many times do we solve a problem and even implement a solution, only to then realise that had we asked a better question we might have come up with a much better solution?

How many times do we convene a meeting without having a specific, one-sentence idea of exactly what we wish to achieve in that meeting?

Being able to crystallise an issue into a single-sentence question is vital, but few people implement that valuable practice.

Have you found the best question?

To put this into context, let me pose the question, and have you think of the answer, before reading on:

What is the specific purpose of a written job application?

The obvious answer is to get the job, but this incorrect.

The sole purpose of the written job application is to get an interview – to get in front of the people making the selection.

With that clear purpose in mind, a written job application takes on a different form. Indeed, what you leave out of your application is just as important as what you include. Your application should be a hook to catch the reader. It should lead the readers to a point where they wish to speak with you to learn more.

This is quite a different approach to writing everything you can think of in the hope that you will win the job. The written application never wins you the job – it’s just the starting point in the process.

Yet another incorrectly-asked question occurs in real estate sales where too much money is wasted on useless advertising, possibly to the benefit of the real estate agent who may receive a commission, but of little value to the vendor.

The question to ask is:

”What are you trying to achieve by advertising a house for sale?”


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