A good question makes it clear that the questioner is willing to participate in the process of developing the solution. It exhibits problem-solving intelligence rather than passively waiting for an answer to drop from above. Whereas a bad question is an act of an intellectual dishonesty on the part of the seeker and a huge time sink on those who have to answer it.
Two hunters are out in the woods when one of them collapses. He doesn’t seem to be breathing and his eyes are glazed. The other guy whips out his phone and calls the emergency services. He gasps, “My friend is dead! What can I do?” The operator says “Calm down. I can help. First, let’s make sure if he’s really dead.” There is a silence, then a gunshot is heard. Back on the phone, the guy says “OK, now what ?”
Well, the guy was a hunter. What else can you expect from him? In fact, you would agree that the blame can’t entirely be put on the poor hunter. The operator’s question wasn’t very clever either.
There’s some truth to the saying – the quality of your questions determine the quality of solutions you get. Computer programmers very well know the theory of GIGO i.e., garbage in garbage out. It’s true with questions too. Good question begets good answer. Bad question attracts a bad answer.
- Spotlight: Big ideas from Value Investing and why applying them in your investment decision making will be a great deal
- InvestorInsights: Interviews with experienced value investors, learners, and deep thinkers
- StockTalk: Thorough analysis of business models of companies (without any recommendations)
- Behaviouronomics: Deep analysis of human behaviour and how it impacts investment decision making
- BookWorm: Reviews of the best books on Value Investing and related subjects
- Free Course – Financial Statement Analysis for Smart People (otherwise priced at Rs 5,900)
- Archives: Instant access to our huge archive from the past three years