"Frank's skill in asking the right questions is un-mistakable, and is at the core of his leadership philosophy.

The power of these questions cannot be underestimated, especially if you want to lead and not manage."
—John Cave
Westhaven Worldwide Logistics

If not otherwise stated—all postings © Frank D. Kanu. All rights reserved.



    In the fifth century B.C. the Greek philosopher Socrates perfected a method of teaching in which he would ask disarmingly simple questions that actually forced people to admit what they didn’t know. As you read this book, you’ll find a number of questions that follow the Socratic tradition. The reason? Today’s managers need more than the predefined answers we might think are correct, but which seldom fit the problem at hand.

    Stop Telling… Start Leading is a work book and should be used as such. It offers many open-ended questions to the manager, offering ways to determine why something has gone off-center. Because every manager is different—the result of education, cultural background, ethnicity, etc.—offering predefined “one size fits all” answers can’t do it any longer. Managers need to answer tough, pointed questions that will force them to come to terms with their goals. Once they do that, they can manage more effectively and more positively—which helps them and their team.

    Many management books are written with the manager as the sole reader in mind. This book will also help interested team members to better understand how and why their team works the way it does.

    It will be a useful tool for all managers who see the need to implement changes in their business. Don’t expect solutions or well-defined answers to every question here. Sometimes managers need to be able to refine their own solutions to find their way. Many of these questions will serve to guide managers toward that goal.

    Misplaced fear. Some managers fear that implementing any new management strategy will result in a team of matching personalities—all alike, with no dynamism. There’s no need to worry about that. To begin with, it shouldn’t be your goal to change the people you work with; rather, you want to help them implement changes that will motivate and encourage them.

    Remember that managers need to know not only that there are more tools than just one or two, but also where to find and how to use them. More than that, they need to understand that learning and teaching is always a two-way street. If you teach without learning you do not teach. If you learn without teaching you do not learn. Managers and employees have a responsibility to each other as well as to themselves.

“The people who get on in this world are the ones who get up and look for the circumstances they want and, if they can’t find them, make them.”
George Bernard Shaw


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