A More Beautiful Question- The power of enquiry to spark breakthrough ideas

Two interesting books I read is recent times are “ A more beautiful Question” and “ The book of beautiful questions” by Warren Berger.

Warren Berger talks of a simple ancient tool – Questioning and its effectiveness in life and business.

Since ancient times philosophers have emphasized the importance of powerful questions and their role in innovation. If Isaac Newton had not wondered why the apple fell, we would not have understood the laws of gravity.

While we do not deny the power of questioning in innovation, how can we apply this to life and to Business?

The author talks of “Why, what if, and How” of innovative questioning. Here the author describes how such questions have helped inventors and discoverers to create or discover new things. The question ““ What can’t the camera be easier to use?” led to “What if you could somehow have a darkroom inside a camera?” which in turn resulted in the invention of the polaroid camera.

How can established businesses reinvent themselves? Here too questioning plays an important part.

To find answers the author gives some tips. The steps involved in finding a solution are:

  1. Step back
  2. Notice what others miss
  3. Challenge assumptions
  4. Gain a deeper understanding of the situation at hand through contextual inquiry
  5. Question the questions asked
  6. Take ownership of a particular question

As a trainer I ask myself the following questions before I customize a workshop for a group of participants.

  1. Why am I taking this course? What is the purpose or objective?
  2. Who is the audience and what is their level?
  3. What is it they know and what do they need to know?
  4. How can I make this easy for them to understand? How can my training be effective?

Answers to these questions help me to create an interesting and effective workshop.

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