The importance of questions in research

Questions and the answers that we receive form the foundations to many of the conversations that we have. We will question consciously and unconsciously throughout our lives; to initiate a conversation; to keep a conversation going; and on occasions to end a conversation too. They are an integral part of our day to day lives, but they also have a very fundamental role to play within the creative process too.

"The scientist is not the person who gives the right answers, he's the one who asks the right questions."

— Claude Lévi-Strauss

Problem solving

But why do we ask questions in the first place? What drives this inner urge for greater knowledge and understanding of the world around us? As far as I am aware, we are the only animal out there who consciously seeks relevant and more often than not irrelevant information purely for their own personal benefit. Well, I can’t answer either question with a definitive answer. But what I do know is the urge for greater knowledge of the world and the processes within it is by no means a new phenomenon. We have been asking questions for hundreds, thousands, if not millions of years. When the first question was asked, and what exactly that first question was, we will never know. But if we consider that the basic fundamental role of a ‘question’ is to solve a problem, then it wouldn’t be too far-fetched to think that the first question asked arose the moment the ‘questioner’ had a problem to solve.

"Some stories are memorable because they only contain one or two core messages."

— Dan and Chip Heath, Made to Stick

How do we improve

Questions do far more than simply satisfy our urge for greater understanding of the world around us. The questions we ask and the answers we receive, solve the problems that we have. No matter how big, small, or trivial the question is: the primary role of the question, is to solve a problem. Which is exactly where our role as a creatives comes in. We solve problems for our clients. And we solve these problems by asking questions; and lots of them.

The world in which we live in today has evolved as a result of the millions of questions that have been asked. The technologies that we use on a now daily basis wouldn’t exist if this unconscious urge for change didn’t exist. Imagine what the world would be like today if Alexander Bell or Steve Jobs hadn’t asked the question: “How we we improve this?”

"Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication."

— Leonardo da Vinci

Free your mind.

The questions we ask and their answers form the foundations of every creative response developed. Without them we are unable to define the unique characteristics of the subject matter, create a profile of the end user and ultimately produce a single minded proposition.

The quality of the question asked is directly proportional to the quality of the answer received. Ask a thought-provoking question and a thought-provoking response will be received.