I signed up for a daily email from Box of Crayons. Succinct, clean, I find them a great way to focus/aim my efforts for any given day. I kept this one, from a handful of days ago, starred in my inbox:
The most powerful coaching question in the world: “And what else?”
It not only teases out more from the person you’re coaching (the first thing they have to say is never the only thing), but it stops you from jumping in and offering solutions or advice before it’s welcome.
I have become infatuated with questions. I’m no longer so young as to feel that I have all of the answers, or so insecure that I sweat asking the wrong question… and I also no longer feel that need to fix things before I have all the information: I’m likely not the only person who has stepped in to solve a problem that wasn’t actually a problem.
I am delighted by the combination of a thoughtful question, some (direct, but not confrontational) eye contact, and silence. It’s a crucible for honest discussion.