While touring a cofferdam earlier this week, I was astounded by the engineering feat of creating a dry area the size of several football fields at the bottom of a major river.

Cofferdams are built in bodies of water to provide a dry area for construction, such as bridges and dams.

First used by King Cyrus of Persia in 539 BC to capture Babylon, cofferdams are a powerful reminder of value of a question.

The Euphrates River protected the Babylonians from invaders. Upon reaching the river’s bank, King Cyrus asked his generals why the river couldn’t be moved. Dirt and rocks were then moved to shift the river’s course and the cofferdam was born. And it began with a question.

What river are you up against? What question(s) could you ask to shift your mindset (and those around you)?

Questions like:

Why is it this way and what could be different?

Why not do it another way?

What if I’m wrong?

How could we think about this differently?

Why can’t the river be moved?


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