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The Power of Questions: How Effective Leaders Coach Their Teams to Success

QUESTIONS are a powerful (and I'll bet underused) tool in your management toolkit.

Questions teach your team to think through their own problems and increase their self-confidence and self-efficacy. It also keeps accountability where it belongs – on your team.

I was reminded of this on a call today with Rand Ferris, who masterfully used questions with his team when we worked together.

What to ask:
• What do you want to achieve in this situation?
• What thoughts have you had on this?
• What is the part that's not yet clear?
• What have you done so far?
• What options do you have?
• What else?
• What are the pros and cons?
• What information do you need to help you arrive at the solution?
• Who might be able to help you?
• What's your next step?

Another good use of questions - next time you’re the senior leader in a meeting, let others talk and speak only to ask clarifying questions for 10-15 min.


If you state what you think at the start, your position will influence the group. They will edit what they otherwise would have said. By letting others speak first, you will hear a more open discussion.

Additionally, it demonstrates that you value their perspective.

Try this for the next few meetings and see what happens.


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