CEO’s Most Important Questions

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this is that question that you find

yourself asking yourself more often than

is there a particular question that that

you find yourself asking yes

why so one of the things you know as

you're as you're doing interviews

particularly in high change environments

giving an example I'm in the I'm in the

digital publishing space and I was

interviewing folks in terms of you know

we have lots of consumer brands

Allrecipes better Homes and Gardens

Martha Stewart parent shaped Fitness all

sorts of brands and I asked one of our

editors they said you know tell me what

you do and she said well you know this

month my goal is to create 50 pieces of

content for the site Sybil why do you do

that what do you mean we need 50 pieces

of content on the site and so kind of

prying us - well let me understand what

really what you're attempting to do and

as opposed to I just need to create 50

pieces of content to put on the site and

having the you know showing the interest

in what's in understanding understanding

the underlying levers of the business

and understanding what people are doing

I think is why a lot

gingy ever a question that you find

yourself asking yourself why not no I

guess I don't think about it like that

like one question that I always go to

but I do you think why is a good one

you do need to understand is it just a

wild hair you've got that you want to do

something or is there really a reason

behind it and what is what you know what

needle isn't gonna move is it going to

make a difference in the business is it

worth investing I don't have a very big

team yeah we're small and so every idea

I have or bring to the table is a huge

burden on them right so I have to be be

careful that it's definitely something

that's going to move the business

forward or or differentiate us in some

way Steve yeah yeah I am I happen to

work in the industry where there's a lot

of kind of legacy and

and and you know not a lot of innovation

in in parts of it and people try to

protect what they have and the lesson

that it's always easier to take lessons

when you watch somebody else as opposed

to your own mistakes and and so one of

the things I was really fascinating to

watch was you know why would somebody

put their interests ahead of somebody

else's interests and and what I mean by

this is that that if you try to protect

what you have you're almost always going

to fail and and so one of the things

that we push really hard at concur was

this idea that that imagine the way the

world ought to work whatever portion of

the world that you operate and imagine

the way it ought to work now you have to

take yourself out of that equation so if

there's any benefit for you by

definition you're gonna arrive at the

wrong answer and so so take yourself and

any benefit for you out of the equation

define the way it ought to work in your

segment of the world and then go try to

make that a reality

if you can do that then then there's a

better chance of of actually succeeding

there's a better chance for many people

not just your company but many people to

actually be a part of that success and

so it's a variation of the Y or the why


but it's that level of openness that I

think it can benefit at least for me

it's benefited both at the company level

and also at the personal level