The Billion Dollar Question

December 17, 2019

We are often asked a very important question, “If you could share only one piece of advice for leaders, what would it be?”

Our answer; “That they learn about and ask themselves The Billion Dollar Question…every day.”

While this post was written with Leaders and Human Resource professionals in mind, all human beings will benefit from the information offered here.

So, if you’re human and would like to eliminate a great deal of the stress, frustration and conflict at work and in life, this article will be more than worth the 20-minute investment.

It is difficult to ascertain the real value of the Most Important Question; however, a Billion Dollars, is a safe underestimate. The rough ballpark value this Question holds for the people and companies we have worked with is already in the millions (and growing rapidly). However, the amount of unnecessary human suffering that has been eliminated is immeasurable.

The Billion Dollar Question is both simple and complex. It is at the heart of a systematic and practical approach for optimizing human potential and eliminating unnecessary human suffering.

Because most people give less time to reading and, because The Billion Dollar Question is a difficult piece to write about,), we offer the link to the 11-minute video HERE.

If for some reason you are unable to view the entire clip, you can find the Billion Dollar Question at the 7-minute mark in the video.

All other pertinent discussion points from the clip can be found in the bullets below.

  • Stress and frustration can intensify situations increasing our need to find answers to feel better or get some sort of control over a situation
  • There is a plethora of books, workshops and courses on dealing effectively with difficult situations and “difficult” people”
  • An unintentional and well-meaning dilemma – we have been MISLED by a predominant behaviorist approach to motivating and engaging people
  • We have been taught to gather information about specific situations and people to Interpret and Manage behavior
  • The information can come from many sources: Assumptions, Our Story, Generalizations and Stereo-types, Files, Labels, Human Behavior Theories, Theories of Performance Management
  • When we believe information to be TRUE, it impacts what we think, how we feel and subsequently how we re-act – and can make situations worse
  • We have all been encouraged to gather information; we have not been taught to make meaning of behavior; especially behavior that is deemed “difficult” or “challenging”
  • Information is not MEANING
  • Problems arise, persist and get worse, not due to mis-communication, but due to a misunderstanding of meaning
  • Meaning = an accurate understanding of a person’s experience as it relates to their needs, values, goals and strengths
  • The greatest challenge I’ve had as an “expert”, who was supposed to have the answers, was to admit to myself (and eventually others) that I did not know what I thought I knew
  • I was part of a system that was encouraging people find information, by starting with the WRONG question – “what do we know about this?”
  • The Question we should have been asking and MUST start with is Insert Billion Dollar Question Here(found in video clip above)
  • If you use this Question every day, it may transform the way you see and experience almost everything
  • We have the option to use information for the basis of our reactions or, we can make meaning by asking ourselves, Insert Billion Dollar Question Here and begin to eliminate the unnecessary stress and conflict we have in our lives

If you have any questions about this post, please do not hesitate to reach out. 

If you would like to learn more about the Billion Dollar Question and other great strategies built to enhance leader-practice, check out the CORE Foundations for Leaders, eLearning Program here.

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