February 23, 2021

Questions are one of the most useful tools that managers can use. Questions can unlock new thinking, show support, strengthen relationships, and much more. Learning to ask the right questions can enhance any manager’s leadership capability.

In this episode, I walk through different types of questions to ask and how to ask them so you cultivate trust and solicit answers that move work forward productively.

The full episode guide includes an overview of different types of questions and my favorite questions to ask. Get it when you join the Modern Manager community or purchase the full guide at www.themodernmanager.com/shop.

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Read the related blog article: How Questions Can Help Us Be Better Managers

Key Takeaways:

  • Questions are not just for gathering information. They also help us build relationships, increase psychological safety and trust, open up thinking, and uncover hidden thoughts.
  • Instead of yes-no questions which often create a false binary, ask a rating question e.g. On a scale of 1-5, how confident are you in this plan?
  • Asking what, why and how will lead to different answers so be thoughtful about what question you’re asking.
  • Asking what if, how might, and why not will open the door to more creative, alternative thinking.
  • How you ask and how you respond also impact what type of response you will get now and in the future.
  • Asking a difficult question in a calm, warm tone shows support.
  • Responding to an answer you don’t like or didn’t expect with appreciation will encourage people to be honest going forward.

Additional Resources:


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