Today, I want to talk about a skill that can truly be your superpower—asking questions.
To develop the art of asking questions effectively, I'd like to introduce you to the "chair model." Imagine yourself sitting down and engaging in conversation, rather than standing up and simply talking. This model will help us explore the key elements of becoming a master questioner.
The first element is being curious. Curiosity is the driving force behind asking questions. When we are genuinely curious, we become more inclined to inquire further and seek knowledge. After all, why would we ask if we already know the answer? Embrace curiosity and let it fuel your quest for knowledge.
Next, we need to be humble. Often, we put pressure on ourselves to have all the answers and make statements instead of asking questions. But when we embrace humility, we recognize that asking questions is a sign of strength, not weakness. It allows us to learn from others and consider different perspectives. So, let go of the need to have all the answers and embrace the power of questioning.
The third element is awareness. We must recognize that questions are our superpower. By cultivating an awareness of the value of asking questions, we become more intentional in our approach. We seek opportunities to learn, engage, and deepen our understanding. Embrace the awareness that questions are beneficial to your growth and development, and watch as your questioning abilities flourish.
The fourth element is inclusivity. While one-on-one conversations may not require much focus on inclusivity, when engaging in a group setting, it becomes essential. Inclusive questioning ensures that everyone has an opportunity to contribute their insights and ideas. By actively involving everyone, we create an environment that fosters collaboration and innovation. So, let's strive to ask questions of everyone, creating a space where diverse perspectives are valued.
Lastly, we have reflection. Reflective questions are often focused on self-evaluation, allowing us to learn from our experiences. However, we can also employ reflective questions when engaging with others. By giving them time to respond and encouraging thoughtful consideration, we create a space for deeper insights and meaningful dialogue. So, don't be afraid to ask reflective questions, both of yourself and others, and watch the richness of the conversation unfold.
The chair model, with its emphasis on curiosity, humility, awareness, inclusivity, and reflection, enables us to shift from asserting our opinions to sitting down, listening, and asking better questions. This approach empowers us to ask more frequently and with greater impact.
As a leader and a human being, asking better questions more often becomes a superpower. It unlocks new possibilities, fuels growth, and strengthens our connections with others. It is a skill worth honing and mastering.
Before I wrap up, I want to invite you to join me on a deeper exploration of unlocking your remarkable potential. Each week, I write a newsletter called Unleashing Your Remarkable Potential, where we delve into various topics that can help you grow as a leader. It's a platform where I frequently pose questions to help you enhance your effectiveness. Join us by signing up for free at KevinEikenberry.com/newsletters.
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"Asking better questions more often is a superpower as a leader and a human being." @KevinEikenberry