Guest Post by Carolyn Stevens
Let’s cut to the chase: Good leaders ask good questions—starting with the questions that they ask of themselves.
Good questions create a productive mindset…
That productive mindset determines what questions the leader asks of others—and those questions help others foster their productive mindsets.
Examples Of Good Questions Are…
- “What can we do to get this resolved?”
- “What could we do to make this more workable?”
- “Which bits of this are we fully committed to?”
- “How could we strengthen this proposal?”
What’s the opposite of a good question? It’s usually a statement that’s symptomatic of negative narrow-mindedness.
Examples Of Negative Narrow-Minded Statements Are…
- “The problem with this is…”
- “What’s going to get in the way of this working is…”
- “There are a few things I don’t like about this.”
- “This just isn’t going to happen because…”
What Makes A “Good” Question A Good Question?
You’ll notice that good questions are focused on solutions, the positive, what’s working and how to make things more effective—whilst negative narrow-minded statements are focused on the opposite.
Interestingly, when you ask a good forward-focused, solution-oriented question, it results in higher productivity, healthier thinking and optimism—all of which leads to happier feelings for everyone involved.
Unsurprisingly, your good questions will have a positive impact on your team members’:
- Discretionary effort—because they’re more motivated, more confident, feeling supported and working on solutions.
- Tenure—because they’ll want to be around you.
The more you dig in to it, the more you’ll notice the copious benefits that flow from asking good questions!
Your Leadership Call To Action
The rubber will hit the road for you when you become more aware of the questions you ask and the statements you make.
Regularly doing a mini audit will allow you to refine your habits and reap the productivity benefits that both you and your team members will experience.
Good questions are motivating!
Carolyn Stevens works intimately with executives, leaders and teams in a trust-filled relationship that leads to outstanding performance and results. She offers an insightful understanding of their world gained from working in the human resource development field for around 25 years. She was awarded the Professional Certified Coach credential by the International Coach Federation (ICF) in 2001 in recognition of her training, applied skills and experience. She’s held roles on ICF’s international Ethics Review Board, International Credentialing Committee and Australia & New Zealand Board. You can connect with Carolyn @ LeadingPerformance.com.au