I was out to dinner for my girlfriends birthday at wine shop that's a few blocks walk from our place.
We grabbed a seat out on the patio.
Browsing the miscellaneous charcuterie, a waiter approached our table.
"Hey, welcome, can I get you started with the house red or the house white tonight?"
This question – "Red or White?" framed our course of action.
It wasn't, "What would you like to drink?" it was "Which of these two options would you like to select?"
We picked the white.
Questions are powerful, as they have a direction to them.
They create a frame for what your answer may be.
Questions want to be answered. When someone asks, you respond, and then it shapes what you see.
When I work with coaching clients, a lot of my work is helping them distill down their thinking into a specific questions that can help them frame what it is that they focus on.
Because the question frames a particular type of answer, you can use this trait to your advantage.
Finding the right question can act as a powerful filter.
For example, this question is a powerful one for setting your to-do list:
"Does this activity directly drive revenue in some way, Yes or No?"
If you are utilizing this question, inherently any activity that answers "Yes" should keep you on track for achieving what you're hoping for. Anything with a "No" can be discarded.
Because the question wants to be answered, it helps create momentum in a particular direction of your choosing.
And, great questions are about curiosity.
"What would happen if..." is a question that invites opportunity, and experimentation.
"Why don't we re-use rockets after they launch?" is a question that invites thinking from the ground up.
When I can, I avoid statements that are concrete answers or lessons.
And instead, I turn to questions.
Their shape is built for growth and clarity.