Asking Good Questions

How do you know what questions to ask and when to ask them?
Photo by Artem Maltsev on Unsplash

I listen to this podcast occasionally and I really enjoyed this episode where the hosts interviewed Cinnie Noble, a conflict management coach who greatly influenced my career.

Cinnie was talking on the topic of asking good questions of persons embroiled in conflict. She mentioned two ideas which I wanted to share with you.

The first idea (at 1:14) was how questions can move someone from reaction to reflection. Think about the change that comes over someone who might be in the grip of some emotion when you ask, "why do you feel that way?"

The second idea (at 16:42) was what to do when you ask a bad question. This has happened to me and I am sure this had happened to you at some point as well. Her answer was to own it as a bad question. I have found that helpful and in addition, I use the opportunity to ask, "what would you have liked me to ask you instead?" That allows the person to tell me what is important to them in that moment.

Try these questions out the next time you are trying to get to the bottom of a conflict with someone. Good luck!