1. What else could America be? When Christina Baldwin and Ann Linnea, authors of excellent book The Circle Way: A Leader in Every Chair, asked Toke Moller to give them a question that he would like Americans to be asked, he replied “what else could America be?” If you apply this simple question to other situations, it opens up possibilities. What else could our organization be? What else could my position be? What else could our company be?
Which brings me to a second great question.
2. What if we re-imagined what our entire industry could look like? What if we went beyond creating a vision for our own company and thought about how our entire industry could move into a new future, providing value for us and others?
This second question comes from the book The Power of Pull: How Small Moves, Smartly Mad, Can Set Big Things in Motion, by John Hagel, John Seely Brown and Lang Davison. The authors call this a “shaping view.” A shaping view, they explain, provides a big-picture focus and defines direction, identifies where the opportunities lie, and describes the fundamental industry forces and the economic appeal of participating in the new view.
In thinking about game changing and innovative strategies, consider bringing your team together and asking this bigger question about how your entire industry might be able to move in a broad new direction. It generates much more interesting conversations and possibilities than the usual vision/ mission discussions.
The better your questions, the better your strategies.