Always ask “Why?”

Always ask "Why?"

Little kids ask "Why?" all the time, because they are sponges for learning. They don't know what they don't know, and so they ask "Why?" to get a better understanding. As we get older, we tend to lose this natural curiosity, either because we assume "Why?" has already been asked and answered or we're just too busy to bother.

We need to be more like little kids.

One of the greatest parts of my work is that, as an outsider coming in to an organization for the first time, I can ask "Why?" about pretty much anything since I'm new to almost everything being discussed.

And "Why?" is such a powerful question because it's not asked as often as it should be. How many times have you heard the answer to "Why?" as some form of "Because we've always done it that way"?

Asking "Why?" forces us to justify what we're doing. Whether it's data that we're collecting, technology we're using, or business processes and rules we're executing, asking "Why?" can help us determine if we're doing something out of habit rather than for a good reason.

So be like those little kids and ask "Why?" more often. You'll be amazed at what you learn!

Wes's Wednesday Wisdom Archives

Motion vs. Action

February 14, 2019

In James Clear’s book Atomic Habits (I recommend it!), he discusses the concept of motion vs. action. […]

Are You Answering Your Calls?

February 7, 2019

I’ve written about this before, but apparently I have to keep repeating it. If you’ve […]

Who do you trust?

January 31, 2019

Who Do You Trust I was reading an article recently about Warren Buffet’s “rules” for […]

Set benchmarks to measure progress

January 24, 2019

It’s impossible to measure progress if you don’t know your starting point. This sounds axiomatic, […]

You’ll make incorrect decisions. Acknowledge them and fix it.

January 17, 2019

A client of mine recently wrote the following to me: “It’s so hard to set […]

"Experience is unobservable to everyone except the person who it happens to."

January 10, 2019

In Dan Gilbert’s book Stumbling on Happiness, he writes: “Experience is unobservable to everyone except […]

Know Your Audience Before You Speak

December 20, 2018

This one may seem obvious, but when you’re speaking to anyone, whether it’s one person, […]

"Behavior is a function of the person in their environment."

December 13, 2018

Lewin’s equation says “behavior is a function of the person in their environment.” (He was […]

Signal-to-noise ratio

December 5, 2018

Signal-to-noise ratio Signal-to-noise ratio, formally used, applies to electricity and engineering, and refers to how […]

Consultants bring perspective

November 28, 2018

Consultants bring perspective At a recent speaking engagement, I was asked what I think is […]

Scroll to Top