Weekly Coaching Tips: Ask Insightful Questions

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Ask insightful questions#7 of 7 Coaching Tips for Becoming a Better Coaching-Based Leader

Not all questions are created equally. Questions that gather data—those who, what, where, why kinds of questions—are helpful when you want to solve a problem. But they’re often a problem when you want to coach someone because they focus on eliminating possibilities, not opening them up.

The goal of any coaching conversation is to ignite the insight necessary to motivate someone to do something differently. That requires opening up their thinking, not closing it down. Ask insightful questions to ignite this insight.

Notice the kinds of questions you ask when you’re coaching. If they are closed ended, yes or no questions, or questions that are really directing others towards what you want them to do, you’re just practicing traditional leadership with questions. That’s not coaching.

Open your questions up to open others to new possibilities.

Would you like to know how you are doing with your transition to coaching-based leadership? Take Cylient’s Coaching-Based Leadership Assessment and find out.

Is this your first coaching tip? Read them all beginning with Coaching Tip #1 here. To go back one week, Coaching Tip #6 can be found here.

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