If your leadership came down to one question, what would that question be?
As a leader, what is the most important question you could ask of anyone in your leadership world? A servant leader might ask, “How can I help?” A field general might ask, “What should I know?” A hands-on leader might ask, “Where do things stand?” A parent might ask, “How are you doing?” A teacher might ask, “What have you learned?” But for our money, if restricted to only one question, an exceptional leader would not hesitate to ask: “What is one thing I can do to make you more effective?”
Words like productive, engaged, and motivated could easily substitute for the word “effective,” and carry similar weight and insight. This question is compelling because it pinpoints exactly the role all great leaders play for others. Your first job as a leader is always to make everyone around you better.
Learning the levers others want you to push for them tells you oodles about what is at play for getting things done. What will make others more effective should always be the first task of the day. Start your leadership day with a great question.