Solid strategic plans, strong work relationships, high morale and improved performance are all byproducts of good questions. This potent communication tool can help you discover important information about your work, yourself, your team, your customers-and create insights that otherwise might have remained hidden.
Below are just a few questions that can have powerful effects on your work as a leader. Ask your questions without leading, prompting or interrupting, and suspend any assumptions. And then be sure to LISTEN to the answers.
- What is it that you’d like to see accomplished and how do you see it happening?
- What are your thoughts? Your concerns?
- What’s the most important priority to you with this and why?
- What would you like to see improved?
- Can you help me understand that a little better?
- What’s in the way of improved performance? How can I change that?
- If I could change one thing as a leaders that would have the greatest impact, what would it be?
- What prevents our team from being able to place more focus on this?
- What self-limiting fears, thoughts or actions do we want to leave behind?
- Are my actions today compatible with what I wish to leave behind as a legacy?
Application: Make it a goal to ask a new question every week. It can be a great way to kick off your next staff meeting, engage in a deeper level conversation in your next one on one, or helpful when you are looking for better feedback. Take notice of your results. If these questions start to open the door to more powerful communication (which we know they will) – start making them a new leadership habit.