Don’t Just Give the Why: Give Context.

Don’t just give the why. Give context instead. It’s a more useful leadership skill.

Why? Well, often we need to move goalposts in order to get after the why.

Giving context is a good way to justify goalposts moving to our teams.

What’s the difference between giving the why vs giving context?

When we explain the why, we tend to miss the context around the why.

That’s why.

Plus, context is more inspiring and liberating.

Context tells us:

  • This is what’s going on. This is what the issues are.
  • This is what we are trying to do. This is how we came up with these actions.
  • This is what you can do. This is what you need to do.
  • This is what I will do. This is why I do what I do.
  • This is what success needs to look like. This is why we define success this way.

What are ways to improve this leadership skill?
Develop your methods to answer the following questions:

  • How effective am I in giving context in different settings? 1 on 1? 1 to many?
  • How effective am I assessing how others understand context?
  • How effective am I inspiring actions and ownership from context?