“Who questions much, shall learn much, and retain.” – Francis Bacon
A good leader is a person who leads with people and not at people. It is crucial to ensure that those I lead are valued and appreciated. In my experience, I have found the answer to this dilemma is to ASK GOOD QUESTIONS.“To be able to ask a question clearly is two-thirds of the way to getting it answered.” – John Ruskin
Ask Questions that
- dive deeper into the truth of the conversation
- reveal the motivations of the speaker
- show you are listening and processing what they are saying
- focus the conversation to an efficient solution
You must make TIME to ask these questions. Take an inventory of your surroundings and discern if you have adequate time to discuss when approached with the conversation. If you don't schedule a time that works for everyone.“The important thing is not to stop questioning.” – Albert Einstein
When You Ask Questions
1. Do very little talking
2. Help the speaker create action steps
3. Do not interrupt
4. Look at them in the eye. Nod and respond with, “uh huh,” “ok,” “I see,” “sure,”
Examples of good questions
- What did you mean by that?
- Would you mind unpacking that for me? Go into a little more detail?
- What do you think are your options?
- Have you thought through the advantages and disadvantages?
- This is what I hear you saying, is that correct?
- What takeaways do you have? How can you (we) apply them?
People Usually Talk In Generalities. Give them action steps and keep them accountable.
At the end of every conversation, end with a shared and measurable action item: Put it on the calendar or give a time when the goal will be completed."What gets measured, gets done."
When Someone Says, “I DON’T KNOW.”
1. Ask, “How might you be able to find that out?”
2.“Is there someone you can talk to?” Who? When? Put it on the calendar.
“We thought that we had the answers, it was the questions we had wrong.” – Bono
Now go practice! The more you practice, the better you will be at asking good meaningful questions.
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