Thirty years of research and practice has led me to a one-sentence conclusion that sums up my approach to organizational problem-solving: The questions people ask about situations they want to change reveal a lot about what they are thinking and feeling. When our unquestioned assumptions immobilize us, struggling to find a better answer is not nearly as useful as working on asking a better question. To be more questionable is to be able to find a better question when you’re stuck for an answer.
My whip-smart niece visited me last month. She’s about a year into her first real job and I was curious about her take on the well-documented divide between millennials and other generations. As an organizational development consultant, I thought I possessed some insight into this complex dynamic. I‘d read several articles, watched a popular Simon Sinek interview on millennial workers, and had my own first-hand experience. What she said, however, surprised me.