Why insights?

Insights are the liminal space between questions and answers. They’re the key to exceptional strategy.

In short:

  • Meaningful questions are more important than quick answers.
  • Good questions lead to insights.
  • Insights lead to answers, but more importantly:
  • While answers change over time, insights are often timeless.

Questions are good. You need people around who ask good questions.

Insights are where the transformation action happens. Questions lead us there.

We tend to think of questions as leading to answers. And yes, sometimes they do. But the best questions lead to insights. And sure, those insights can then steer you to the answers and solutions that serve the moment and the context, but insights often demand a little space of their own before they point the way.

Don’t hurry past insights:
the best insights are those you can really let steep, that with a little more coaxing might lead to breakthroughs.

Answers are mostly short-term patches anyway; they’re often Band-Aids on execution that no longer meets the moment. Everywhere that you’re currently facing transformation was a place where an answer used to be correct. But here’s the magic: the insight that led you there is likely still true. It just may not be enough. Chances are you have to go back, ask new questions, see whether they lead you to new insights, and then let the insights guide you to the answers you need now.

Insights sometimes feel obvious when you stumble on them. That’s one way you know they’re true. They’re often a little ambiguous, but they also contain a degree of profundity that you can return to again and again. The insight that people will feel a connection with things that are designed well may sound trite, but it’s part of what has made Apple a $2-trillion dollar business and made their products such a necessity for hundreds of millions of people. But the products themselves — the answers to the questions, so to speak — have had to change and evolve with the aesthetic of the moment. You might even argue that they often set the aesthetic of the moment.

Answers that serve the moment are bound to change over time, but good insights tend to be timeless. And how do you get to good insights? You start with good questions.

That’s the real value KO Insights offers: we go deep on the questions to come up with the insights that matter. And those insights pay off for our clients.