May I ask, do you have a favorite quote about questioning?
Listening may be the most distinctive practice of servant leadership.
But not far behind listening is another distinctive servant leadership practice: questioning.
I often incorporate quotes about questioning into my servant leadership presentations. Let me share some of my favorites.
Here (in alphabetical order by author) are 15 great quotes about questioning:
- “The master key of knowledge is, indeed, a persistent and frequent questioning.” – Peter Abelard
- “A prudent question is one half of wisdom.” – Francis Bacon
- “The one who knows all the answers has not been asked all the questions.” – Confucius
- “The most serious mistakes are not being made as a result of wrong answers. The true dangerous thing is asking the wrong question.” – Peter Drucker
- “Only the one who does not question is safe from making a mistake.” – Albert Einstein
- “The power to question is the basis of all human progress.” – Indira Gandhi
- “What are you trying to do – one of the easiest to ask and most difficult to answer of questions.” – Robert K. Greenleaf
- “Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’” – Martin Luther King, Jr.
- “There are no right answers to wrong questions.” – Ursula K. Le Guin
- “You can tell whether a man is clever by his answers. You can tell whether a man is wise by his questions.” – Naguib Mahfouz
- “Never ask a question unless the answer makes a difference.” – Proverb
- “There are no foolish questions and no man becomes a fool until he has stopped asking questions.” – Charles Proteus Steinmetz
- “The greatest compliment that was ever paid me was when someone asked me what I thought, and attended to my answer.” – Henry David Thoreau
- “It’s better to know some of the questions than all of the answers.” – James Thurber
- “Questions are never indiscreet, answers sometimes are.” – Oscar Wilde
Would you like one more for fun? OK, how about this:
“My best attribute is knowing when not to answer stupid questions.” – Gina Gershon
Do you like any of these quotes in particular? Do you have a favorite quote about questioning you would add to the list?
Let us know.
As always, we appreciate your views.