Arguably, Jesus Christ was the greatest leader in actual leadership standards to ever grace the world. He started with nothing, stayed faithful and persevered through great trials, and equipped a small core of people to lead in His style. They started with 12 people, and now have had millions and millions of “franchises” on every continent for more than 2000 years. And He did it without technology!
One of the many principles we can learn from Him is that questions are a powerful way to learn and lead. He asked questions as a primary way of getting people to think, learn, grow, and commit. I like to collect questions and ask them of myself and my leaders regularly.
These are some of the questions I have found that help me and are great to pass on to my team. Some of these would be transforming if you asked them every day. In fact, you can have a super-charged team meeting just by asking one or two of these questions:
What are my priorities for the day? (It is really hard to follow someone who isn't organized.)
What should I delegate?
What can be improved?
How can I help someone else?
What can I do in anticipation of tomorrow?
Who can I thank? (publicly/privately)
What can I do today in anticipation of tomorrow?
What did I learn today?
Where do I need to bring clarity?
Do I have the right people at the table?
With whom do I need to connect?
Do I have the right people around me?
Where is our culture slipping?
Where do I need to follow up or follow through? Where have I dropped the ball?
Whom do I need to thank?
Whom do I need to recognize? Celebrate?
Whom do I need to spend more time with?
How are my relationships? (spouse/kids/family/team)
Are we working on the right things?
How is the morale? Culture?
When is the last time we had fun? Celebrated?
How is my heart? Is it shrinking or growing bigger? Do I need to forgive someone or ask for forgiveness?
Am I being strategic enough?
Can and do I express the vision with passion and clarity, frequently?
For what and to whom am I grateful?
Whom or what do I need to eliminate from my circle or life?
What is it like to work for me?
What have I been hesitating on? Procrastinating on?
Am I using my time to the best of my ability?
What did I do to help my team?
Am I growing, learning, and leading myself well?
Do I provide clear guidance on what I expect of my team?
Am I providing clear feedback for my people?
Am I communicating and really connecting with my team or customers? Do they know what’s up, really?
Am I asking powerful questions and listening to my people?
What’s the best thing I could do in the next 10 minutes?
What would a great leader do in this situation that I am unwilling or reluctant to do? Why?
What’s going well for you and your team this week?
What barriers are getting in the way of your success? Where are you stuck?
What can I do to help you be more successful?
How are you feeling at work lately?
On a scale of 1-10, how satisfied are you? Why?
What’s the best thing that happened to you this week, either at work or outside of it?
If you had the chance, what’s one thing you would do to improve the product or service provided by your company?
If you owned the company, what’s one thing you would do differently?
What were some great contributions made by other team members recently?
What can I do to be a better leader?
How did I enable or hold back my team today?
Who is challenging my way of thinking?
Whom haven’t I met with recently?
One more question: Why won’t I take these questions seriously? Why won’t I make a habit of asking them and then follow through? If you answer that sincerely and then address it, you may just take your leadership to the next level.