“What have I done now?” protested David. “It was just a question.” – 1 Samuel 17:29
Are you the person in the room (or the meeting) who always seems to ask the “uncomfortable” question?
When David, the shepherd-boy, heard Goliath (the Philistine) mocking God, he asked the Israelite soldiers why they had not taken action to shut giant’s mouth. David’s brother took offense at David’s question and accused him of arrogance and impure motives. The fact was that David’s brother and many of the other soldiers were cowards and David’s innocent question had brought that cowardice to light. Eliab’s anger and reaction to David was a weak attempt to deflect his own shame.
There are three questions that will often shatter the security of the complacent. They are: “Why?” “Why not?” and, “So what?” When the primary objective is to maintain the “status quo” of an organization or methodology these questions will inevitably invite the animosity and anger of those whose identity is most wrapped up in its preservation. It may involve their career or perhaps their reputation, but they will fight when they are provoked. These questions often trouble leaders into reevaluating the purpose of their organization and even its very existence. This, for many, is a frightening prospect, so what should you do?
KEEP ASKING … and pack your bags! Change usually comes no other way … and the “giants” must die.
If there are no stupid questions, then what kind of questions do stupid people ask? Do they get smart just in time to ask questions? – Scott Adams
Dr. David Pope is President and Founder of POPE Initiatives, a non-profit organization committed to providing executive-level management and support services for major global mission efforts.
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