3 Simple Questions for Clear Guidance

In a practical follow up to Working From Second Chair, here are three simple questions to provide clear Guidance. You can use this tool with your boss or with those you supervise. I even made laminated cards to pass out.  When a new initiative comes up or you need to clarify an ongoing program or process, review the 3 simple questions.

1. WHY are we doing this?

This is the 50,000 foot view.

How does “this” tie into our overarching vision and values? This will determine if the initiative should even see the light of day.

2. WHAT is the 1 thing you would most like this to accomplish?

20,000 foot view.

This is where it gets tough because the leader must boil down the entire initiative to a singular purpose that is measurable. It requires the leader to prioritize between all the good things which might be accomplished and declare a bull’s-eye for the team to hit. This is the measure by which its success will be judged– did we accomplish X?

3. HOW are we accomplishing this one thing?

5 foot view.

If you are a leader of leaders –and not just a manger of doers–it is imperative you hand them some of the rope at this point.  Leaders must be empowered to decide their tactics that meet the answer provided to question #2 based upon their connection with their people.

If you provide them exact tactics, they are no longer leaders working under you but simply doers. If you completely provide every detail of the tactics to be used, good leaders will get frustrated because they are stifled from leading. If you release the tactics to your team with clear guidance on what you want them to accomplish, you can spend your energy on other 50,0000′ and 20,000′ feet ideas.

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Jordan Fowler

Jordan helps small businesses grow as the owner of Moon & Owl Marketing, a marketing and advertising agency in Fort Worth, TX. Lover of cycling, track and field, and borderline Liverpool FC fanatic.

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