This morning I read a post from Seth Godin entitled “Why do you do it this way?” It was notable because I’ve been asking myself this question a lot lately. We are in the middle of a rebrand at RW Elephant. What started with a logo and website redesign has snowballed to encompass our knowledgebase, application interface, and user onboarding process— definitely lots of big changes coming soon! Along the way, I’ve been challenging myself with a similar question. I want to think about the best way to do things, not just the way it has always been done. That can be an intimidating question and one that requires brutal honesty at times.
But “why” questions also make us defensive, don’t they? Well, at least they make me feel defensive. So, I’ve been trying to give myself grace. Sometimes, when I ask why, I find that my reasoning way-back-when was really dumb. Sometimes why we did something made sense at the time but really doesn’t now. Sometimes our really good ideas have stood the test of time and will be preserved. In all of this, I’m reminding myself that I did the best I could when I did it. And now I may change. Change in business can be good when it is rooted in “why” questions.
I often find myself asking niche event rental business owners users “why” questions in consulting sessions. Their answers sometimes sound a lot like cutting the ends off a ham to me. I don’t ask to be critical. Asking why (with curiosity rather than judgment) can help you stay close to your core values. It can be a valuable catalyst for growth, efficiency, and also joy in your rental business.