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Nils Boeffel shares a post that identifies how to ask the right questions to get the information you need. 

Many managers are confronted with complex decisions to make, and not enough time in which to make them. One way to help make better decisions more quickly is knowing how to ask questions that get to the core of the subject, and not just tiptoe around the edges.

Let’s look at an example. If you ask what your marketing budget is being spent on, and you get the answer “We’re spending X amount and have a market penetration of nearly 38%”, do you just have more facts to remember, or does that really help you make a decision and act on the information?

Odds are, it really doesn’t help you. It doesn’t help you understand if the money is well spent or not, and it surely doesn’t help you make any critical business decisions. So how do we ask the right questions, and how do we know when we’ve got a good and helpful answer?

A good question seeks to understand, and a good answer helps to decide.

How do you ask a good question?

Asking good questions gets you halfway to a good answer.

Don’t stop at fact-questions, ask knowledge questions: Consider the questions “What is our marketing budget” vs. “how well is our marketing budget being spent?” The first question will get you an answer, but the second will help you understand what the answer means and what is significant about it

Focus on the penetrating “why” and “how” questions instead of the simple fact-seeking “what”, “when” and “where” questions

Ask “why” five times: many people are afraid to dig deeper into an issue, and will only provide relevant information after some “digging”. You will be surprised where the answers lead when you keep digging.

 

Key points include:

  • Ask knowledge questions
  • How do you know you’ve got a good answer?
  • Getting to the bottom of the real issues

 

Read the full article, How to Ask the Right Questions, on NilsBoeffel.com.

 

 

Nils Boeffel provides key steps you can take to ensure your digital strategy will be successful. 

Everyone is talking about digitalization, but many people and organizations get it wrong. To them it means throwing technology at things, hoping that they will get better. What is it really, what does it mean, and how do you think about it and implement it?

Last year I led a digitalization workshop at a company where they were looking to increase their digitization efforts. They recognized the need to move ahead (mainly due to changing market demands and the competitive situation), had several topics already under way, and wanted to “speed things up.” During the workshop it turned out that many things were already being done in different parts of the organization, that there was no central digital strategy, that the digitization was not integrated with their overall corporate strategy, and that the initiatives were taking longer than planned, and not providing the expected benefits.

How could they do it better, and what would it take to successfully define a digital strategy and implement digitalization?

What is digitalization?

The main aspect of digitalization means bringing information (data) and people (the users of the data) closer together, and bringing more data into an easily accessible and usable digital format. Digital data is only helpful if the information is used to provide value, accelerate or simplify processes, aid in decision making (as in KPIs), or help us better understand a topic.

 

Key points include:

  • Three key roles in digitalization
  • Phases of digital strategy
  • Puting digitalization on the corporate agenda

 

Read the full article, Digital strategy or digital disaster – how to develop a successful digital strategy, on Boeffel.net.

 

 

Nils Boeffel explains what can go wrong with a digital strategy and shares tips on how to develop a successful digital strategy. 

Everyone is talking about digitalization, but many people and organizations get it wrong. To them it means throwing technology at things, hoping that they will get better. What is it really, what does it mean, and how do you think about it and implement it?

Last year I led a digitalization workshop at a company where they were looking to increase their digitization efforts. They recognized the need to move ahead (mainly due to changing market demands and the competitive situation), had several topics already under way, and wanted to “speed things up.” During the workshop it turned out that many things were already being done in different parts of the organization, that there was no central digital strategy, that the digitization was not integrated with their overall corporate strategy, and that the initiatives were taking longer than planned, and not providing the expected benefits.

How could they do it better, and what would it take to successfully define a digital strategy and implement digitalization?

 

Points covered in this article include:

  • Three key roles in digitalization
  • Phases of digital strategy 
  • Questions to ask

 

Read the full article, Digital Strategy or Digital Disaster – how to develop a successful digital strategy, on his company website.