Why is important because it answers our questions
As kids, when we reach a certain age we discover the power of answers! And that is why we go through that annoying “why phase.” Grown-ups may find the phase irritating but to a child why is important. We want answers! We don’t want long explanations, confusing data, or excuses. All we want is knowledge. In my book I tell a story about a little kid that asks “What’s a vasectomy?” The mother started to panic. She tried to avoid answering the question so she began to think of all kinds of stories and distractions. I shook my head and responded, “It’s an operation so men can’t make babies.” Enough said.
Why is important because it gives us the data we need to fill in the blanks. That is why my golf pro Andrew Thompson is so good. When he makes a change to my swing he does it for a reason. He is a successful golf pro because he is excellent at explaining the why. I need to shift my weight two inches forward because that puts my body in the proper position and helps me make that divot after I strike the ball.
As adults, too often we over explain and include every little detail. Or even worse, we make excuses because the question makes us feel uncomfortable. Answering a question with clarity and honesty makes all the difference in the world and to do otherwise only creates more questions. For example when a customer or boss asks “Why was the project late?” we begin to read all kinds of things, usually negative things, into the question. They are not happy, I am in trouble, I could lose this account. We respond with excuses and diversions instead of answers. This is never a good idea. Why? Because most of the time the person just wants an answer. They want more information not more questions. Why was the project late? Because the stock was back ordered, because the project was more complicated than we expected, because I messed up.
Your response to a questions is important because it is part of the communication process. People ask why because they are looking for answers. They need to fill in the blanks so they can gain full understanding of a situation. To avoid or respond with half truths and diversions is doing both sides a disservice. When someone asks a question they are looking for clarification. Once we learn to answer questions with clarity and honesty we eliminate the need for more questions. To respond with anything else only complicates the process and leads down the annoying path of why why why.
Golf and Life Lesson #1 What I learned from a little white ball
Golf and Life Lesson #2 Find a pro and get the knowledge you need
Golf and Life Lesson #3 Start with baby steps
Golf and Life Lesson #4 Overcoming Obstacles
Golf and Life Lesson #5 Change just feels funny
For the real golfers read what my pro has to say
The Susan Project – by Golf Pro Andrew Thompson