Humble Inquiry by Moe Abdou

I learned long ago that the best answer to almost any question is another question.  Not only does it force you to think deeper about the issue at hand, more importantly, it almost always challenges current assumptions. The best leaders I know make an art of asking questions; to them, a great question is the one that leads to otherquestions. Not long ago, I was at a board meeting with a high growth technology company when the CEO started to discuss the upcoming year’s product roadmap. He inspired us with his vision and convinced us of the imminent changes ahead, but it wasn’t until the elder statesman of board asked the question “what’s likely not to change during that period?” that we all agreed to narrow our focus.

MIT Professor of Management Emeritus, Edgar Schein understands leadership and organizational culture like no other; and in his latest book - Humble Inquiry, he’ll convince you to do less telling; start asking better questions, and become a superb listener. You’ll see that the social art of asking a question starts with this.

Further Reading
  • Michael Serbinis: What I've Learned — Visionary Entrepreneur, investor and CEO and Founder of the new healthcare startup, LEAGUE, Michael Serbinis shares what he learned building three disruptive startups, selling two of them and working with Kimbal and Elon Musk.
  • The Startup Glossary: Founders Share Their Go-To Learning Tools — Whether you mispronounced your boss’ name (It’s just Mike, not Mique) or were caught taking a selfie in the elevator, we all have our collection of embarrassing office moments. My most cringeworthy thus far happened when my dad asked our team to go around the table and share the resources we use to learn.
  • How Being Present Laid the Foundation for Rachel Blumenthal's Success — It’s become a running joke between my dad and me that I have a new best friend every day. The adage stems from the common practice I’ve adopted sprinting out of my interviews and exclaiming “I love them!” seconds after I hang up with our guests on Skype. Hosting 33founders is an enormous blessing for so many reasons.

back to the blog