The next time you start to ask a question, stop and ask yourself two questions before you ask someone else one:

  1. Do I already know the answer?
  2. Can I easily find out the answer on my own?

In attempting to answer #1, think about whether someone has already told you the answer and you’ve simply forgotten. Or, perhaps you know the answer, but you’re trying to appear intelligent or thoughtful by asking again.

This is of critical importance when the person to whom you’re taking the question is your boss or some other authority figure. That person doesn’t have time to tell you the same thing multiple times. Respect your boss’ time by not pestering him or her with unnecessary inquiries and striving to figure things out on your own.

So the next time you think, “Well, I’ll just ask her about it. It will be easier and quicker for me because I know she has the answer,” pause. It may be easier for you, but 1) you’re wasting her time, and 2) you won’t learn anything. Just use your brain and think about it before running your trap.