You don’t know everything. It’s ok. None of us do. In fact, most issues we face today are simply too complex for one person to understand all of the nuances and opportunities.
But, we can be smarter. The simple act of engaging other people and inquiring about what they know, their perspective, their experiences, their ideas, all of this will help you and your organization to learn.
So much of association life is spent in a doing cycle – planning for and implementing board meetings and conferences, keeping up with publication schedules, facilitating member outreach, responding to volunteer questions, etc.- that sometimes we fail to pause and ask the questions that can make us better at the stuff we do. Learning behaviors like asking questions, seeking feedback, and thinking are how we and our organizations get smarter.
Conversations are a key way that organizations and many people think and learn. Engaging people in discussion around things like:
- Why are we doing ___?
- What did we learn?
- How can we do this better next time?
- What do members need, now? Next year?
Helps you to identify the changes, patterns, opportunities, challenges and needs that your organization can leverage to move forward and build your future successes.
Empower the smart ambitious people on your team and in your community to be part of your success. Ask questions. Encourage them to explore, share what they know, think or see. Invite them to be part of your learning and your next big or little idea.
“The [person] who asks a question is a fool for a minute. The [person] who does not ask is a fool for life.” ~ Confucius