10 Questions That Give Vitality to Beginnings

Painful endings and uncertain beginnings are the two moments you make the most difference in a leader’s life.

10 Dangers in every new beginning:

  1. Confusing and obscure pictures of success.
  2. Listening to counsel from people who don’t first ask, “What’s your vision?” Everyone who offers advice without clarifying vision has their own agenda, not yours, in mind.
  3. Choosing a course rooted in what others want from you rather than what you want from yourself.
  4. Reacting against the past rather than reaching toward the future.
  5. Decisions based on inaccurate information or faulty opinions.
  6. Moving forward alone; neglecting allies. If you wait until you need a relationship to build it, it’s too late. (Inspired by Steve Keating, Selling Skills Manager for Toro)
  7. Glorifying giant steps and minimizing mundane progress.
  8. No following through.
  9. Emotionally dipping after exciting first steps. Getting there is harder than you think, if it isn’t, you aimed too low.
  10. Failing to adapt as you go. People always get stuck when they fail to adapt.

10 Questions for beginning well:

  1. Why does this matter? Listen for positive motivations base in personal values.
  2. What personal values drive you forward?
  3. Are you reacting against or reaching forward? Reacting seldom takes you where you want to go.
  4. What does success look like? The first step toward success is defining it. Clarity instills confidence. Those who resist clarity aren’t prepared to move forward.
  5. What have you assumed to be true that might be false? Challenge assumptions.
  6. What’s next?
  7. Have you followed through?
  8. What is frustrating and/or fulfilling?
  9. Are you becoming who you want to be?
  10. How can I help?

What dangers do you see in new beginnings?

What questions would you ask to help others begin well?


Want more? Here’s how to help people end well. “When to Make the Most Difference


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