This blog is for all the managers and business owners out there that are still hands on and get into the operations from time to time!
Last week I walked the floor with a General Manager of a large multi site operation and I witnessed her go up and engage with many of her staff. I soon began to become acutely aware of what she was saying.
“Hi guys, how’s it going today?”, “Hi team, having a good day?”, “Hi guys, has today been good so far?”
None of these questions are wrong, nor did it have a negative impact however it got me thinking as operators (and yes I’ve been guilty of this too). When you hit the floor, a store or want to get into the middle of the action and see your team in operation, it is clear the quality of your questions will be the quality of insights they share with you. It’s pretty easy to answer to a manager and tell them what they want to hear.
I’ve been preaching all week to a company about how to ask better questions of their customers and get really interested with what their customers can tell them. I have realised that this piece of advice could also be good for managers and their employees.
Quality Questions will bring Quality Insights to your business.
If you make the effort to walk the floor and see your operation in play, then make a smidgen of an effort more with your questions and see what you and your employees learn.
- Always ask staff open ended questions (these start with Who, What, When, Why, How and Where) employees will have to give you more than yes/no answers!
- Prepare the 2 or 3 questions you want to ask before you leave your desk and immerse yourself into your operations team. Know what you want to learn today and ask that question.
- Mix up your quality questions so that your staff don’t become too familiar with what you ask (remember the quality of the question will also show you how much your staff do know about your business or their customer’s).
As the old saying goes: “If your not measuring it your not managing it”.
Ask quality questions to be better informed of what needs further managing in your business. Get really good at asking questions.
Go and Inspire!