Close this search box.

QBQ! The Question Behind the Question

John G. Miller
Practicing Personal Accountability at Work and in Life

This book of the month, QBQ! The Question Behind the Question, is one of Patrick Britton’s favorites, and his go-to book on personal accountability.

No organization, or individual, can achieve goals, compete in the marketplace, fulfill a vision, or develop people and teams without accountability. QBQ! answers the question –

What should you really ask yourself to eliminate blame, victim thinking, complaining, and procrastination?

John G. Miller discusses how people tend to blame others for personal and professional troubles. Miller believes in taking responsibility for one’s actions, problems, and feelings instead of blaming others.

One of the chapters in QBQ! is called, I Can Only Change Me, and in this chapter, we are reminded that in any circumstance the only person that you can change is yourself. However, there is a big difference between understanding this concept and actually living it.

Perhaps you are a manager who is dealing with a difficult employee. You do your best to change the employee’s attitude, and nothing is working. The attitude you should be changing is your own. A manager’s role is to coach and counsel – not to change another person. Change is something that occurs internally as a result of decisions made by the individual.

The same applies for the reverse. An employee who works for a difficult manager cannot change the manager. The only aspect the employee can change is how he or she deals with the difficult manager.

QBQ! encourages us to move away from negative and victim-like questions such as “Why do we have to go through all this change?” or “Why did Brad do that to me?” Instead, we should be asking ourselves  solution-based questions that begin with “what” or “how” and contain “I” – “What could I have done differently to create a better outcome?” or “How can I improve this situation?”

You’ll make better choices in the heat of the moment when you start asking yourself better questions.


QBQ! The Question Behind the Question is Recommended Reading for Navigate Academy Module 26: Problem Solving Process

Featured Content

Handpicked Related Content