"Cayla, I hope this isn't another dumb question. But what makes a question dumb? Obviously not all questions are dumb. In fact, I've always heard that there's no such thing as a dumb question."
"Smart question," Cayla said. "There are 3 types of dumb questions. One when the answer is obvious. Two, when you're not willing to hear a certain response. And three, when you already know what you want to hear."
"For example, Rhonda is running around with her head cut off, but you need some help. So you ask, 'Are you busy?' That's a dumb question. Of course she's busy! so she says something like, 'There just aren't enough hours in the day.' You feel guilty, so you get flustered and leave her alone so as not to add to her burden.
"It is better for you to just simply state your needs truthfully: 'Rhonda, I need 15 minutes of your time to discuss this project. If this isn't a good time, I can come back at 3 o'clock.'"
Steven couldn't deny that he often asked what appeared to be the dumb question instead of stating his needs directly. "What makes the 'I need' phrase so powerful?" he asked.
"When you tell someone you want something, their first thought is usually, We all want things we can't have. When you use the I need phrase, you're coming from a position of strength. You've thought about what it's going to take to succeed and are requesting a person's help. It's amazing, but human beings love to feel needed. They love to think they can help you. 'I need' is very compelling."
This book deals with using the situational leadership model first introduced in the book "Leadership and the One-Minute Manager" to yourself.
The situational needs model (pdf here) illustrates the different stages of development of a person undergoing the transition from learner to master.
The main points of this book are:
- Challenge Assumed Constraints
- Celebrate Points of Power
- Collaborate for Success
Empowerment is something someone gives you. Self leadership is what you do to make it work.
An asumed constraint is a belief you have, based on past experience, that limits your current and future experiences.
Ultimately, it's in your own best interest to accept responsibility for getting what you need to succeed in the workplace.
Don't buy into the assumed constraint that position power is the only power that works.
The only way in which anyone can lead you is to restore to you the belief in your own guidance--Henry Miller.Use your Points of Power:
- Position Power (the boss)
- Knowledge Power (technical, knowledge, know-how)
- Relationship Power (people skills, relatives)
- Personal Power (ability to give assurance to people and make them feel comfortable)
- Task Power (ability to do or not do something)
There is magic in diagnosing your development level and getting the direction and support you need to achieve your goal.
The 2 most power words to collaborate for success are: "I NEED"
A leader is anyone who can give you the support and direction you need to achieve your goal.