Ask more WHAT IF questions

By Jim LaDoux
Help your leaders ask questions that lead to conversations about new ways of thinking, listening, discerning, and doing. Ask more WHAT IF questions that move leaders beyond their current assumptions, approaches, norms, and traditions. Listed below are sample WHAT IF questions to embed in future leadership meetings, sermons, small groups and visioning events to evoke new awareness, new perspectives, and new approaches.
  • What if there is a better way to do this?
  • What if we are solving the wrong problem?
  •  What if we ask our (prospective) customers what their needs are?
  • What if we ask our employees what would make it easier to serve our customers?
  •  What if we changed our services, or products, or processes to meet ever-changing needs?
  • What if we looked for a different set of skills in the people we hire?
  • What if we developed a new set of relationships?
  • What if we viewed failure differently?
  •  What if we rewarded things like innovation?
  • What if everyone in our organization had a personal growth plan?
  • What if we tried something new?
  • What if we scheduled time to think creatively and dream?
  • What if we viewed problems as opportunities for improvement rather than threats? 
  • What if we showed more empathy to everyone we interact with?
  • What if we asked “Why not” more then we asked “Why”?
  • What if we read more books?
  • What if we viewed more decisions as investments rather than expenses?
  • What if our best days are ahead?
  •  What if we could change the world today?
  • What if we asked Jesus more often what He thinks?

Consider framing your this month's meeting agendas around more what if questions. Use What if questions to rethink your next family vacation, your daily routines, and your most important relationships. 


  1. How can you help leaders explore more actions and approaches when repeating events they've done in the past?
  2. Who are the people on your teams that help you think beyond "what is" or "what's been done in the past?
  3. Have you ever invited leaders to reflect on what if questions inn preparation for upcoming meetings?

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