One morning several years ago, I received a phone call at my office from the executive secretary of my pastor. Little did I know that this call, and the strange request I was about to hear, would change the very future of my business…
She asked if I could pick up a gentleman at his hotel and just drive him around town for a couple of hours.
I asked, “Where should I take him?” She responded with…”Just drive him around.”
As I cleared my calendar for the morning, I thought, “This has to be the strangest request ever!”
So I went to the hotel to pick up this gentleman. And there he was waiting for me.
When he got into my car, he introduced himself as Bobb Biehl, and he was carrying a yellow tablet and a pen.
I asked him about the yellow tablet, and he said, “I like to carry one so I can write down ideas that come to me.”
I thought this going to be interesting. I asked myself, “Is he going to write down things about our town?”
He was ready and excited for me to drive him around town for a couple of hours.
He asked me if I could take him around to our businesses as we drove around town.
As we drove around, he started to ask me these very profound questions about me personally and about our business. And I mean really profound questions.
Even though I had considered some of these questions before, I had never had anyone ask these questions before.
And he did it with the right attitude of “How may I help you?”
After two hours of driving around town and stopping at our various business locations, he showed me all of his notes on his yellow tablet.
To my surprise, it was not about what he saw as we drove around town, it was about me and our business.
He had been writing down ideas based on my responses to his profound questions.
It was amazing how in just two hours and through what I thought was just a conversation, his insightfulness cut through the fog in my mind with a very simple strategic plan for my business.
I was so impressed with his suggested strategic plan that I implemented every piece of it.
And you know what, every piece of that strategic plan worked, and even though there were tough decisions to make, they were all the right decisions.
Well, I can assure you from then on Bobb Biehl became a friend for life.
Bobb Biehl shares the following in his book, Asking Profound Questions:
Every leader can achieve extraordinary results by asking four sets of profound questions.
Most Basic Questions
It seems even at a young age, I heard these most basic questions, and I’m sure you have too.
I have found these questions useful when making an announcement or an invitation and for setting up an event or meeting.
Empowering leaders seek input from their employees at the very beginning of the decision-making process and before making a decision.
And they ask these three key questions:
- Who can help me make a better decision?
- Who will have to carry it out?
- Who will be impacted by it?
When you, as the leader, use group exercises to brainstorm ideas and thoughts, and when you sincerely seek your people’s input, your people have a better understanding of and commitment to the decision that you collaboratively set.
Furthermore, when employees are involved in the development/creation and implementation of decisions, they take pride in the achievement of the results.
Preserve the Core Questions
The answers to these two questions are the only thing an organization should not change over time.
- Who are you? – Your Values
- Why do you exist? – Your Purpose
Grow Your Business Questions
I have used so many profound questions to advance myself and my company forward. Profound questions can help you understand where you are, where you want to go, and how to get there!
In fact, I’ve compiled a page of questions that will help you grow your business. You can <click here> to download the document “12 Profound Questions to Grow Your Business”. These additional questions won’t cost you a dime to download, and I promise that the thoughts and plans that these questions will stimulate and help you grow your organization!
Even if you are not a leader in your organization, you can use this handy set of questions to “lead from behind” and influence those who lead you.
I have learned that profound questions lead to profound answers. I urge you to set aside time this week to ask yourself the hard questions necessary for principled growth and achievement.
The seed that fell among thorns stands for those who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked by life’s worries, riches and pleasures, and they do not mature. But the seed on good soil stands for those with a noble and good heart, who hear the word, retain it, and by persevering produce a crop. Luke 8:14-15 NIV
Click the image below to download the printable: “12 Profound Questions to Grow Your Business”
Have you ever asked these or other profound questions? What were the results from asking profound questions? Please share your comments <here> and share this blog posts with family and/or a friend.