12 questions to ask your staff

Fall in MI OCT 2013Good morning! A nice morning here, but there is a freeze warning for tomorrow – not sure if I am ready for that!

Questions are powerful tools – that has been proven time and again. However, if you’re like me, you may have a hard time coming up with good questions. So, what I have done is to become a collector of good questions developed by others like Bobb Biehl.  Another person is Marcus Buckingham. In his book. First, Break All the Rules, he lists 12 excellent questions for people to ask. I am going to slightly  modify the questions so that they become ones that you can ask those that you lead. Here they are:

1. Do you know what is expected of you at work?
2. Do you have the materials and equipment that you need in order to do your work right?
3. At work, do you have the opportunity to do what you do best every day?
4. In the past seven days, have you received recognition or praise for doing good work?
5. Does your supervisor, or someone at work, seem to care about you as a person?
6. Is there someone at work who encourages your development?
7. At work, do your opinions seem to count?
8. Does the mission or purpose of this company make you feel that your job is important?
9. Are your coworkers committed to doing quality work?
10. Do you have a best friend at work?
11. In the past six months, has someone at work talked to you about your progress?
12. This past year, have you had opportunities at work to learn and grow?

Try these questions with your team and then just listen. Don’t respond at first and especially don’t become defensive – just listen. What you learn will be critical to the success of your team.

Blessings on your week,

The Question to Ask

Good morning from Florida.  Headed back to Michigan today after a great Board of Directors meeting for Life Action.

Questions are great tools for so many different things.  They are excellent to use in leading others, in developing people, in gaining knowledge, and in diagnosing problems.

One of the most powerful questions is a simple one word question – “Why?”.  One of our board members was talking to me this week about what a powerful tool it has been for him.  I would go on to add, that asking why five times is one of the most important tools in your diagnostic “kit”.  Often the answer to the first why is not the real answer – the real answer often shows up around the fourth or fifth why.

Try it sometime – when you ask someone why something occurred and they answer, then simply ask them “And why is that?”.  After the next answer, ask again, “And why is that?”.  You get the picture.

Why – a simple yet powerful word.

Blessings on your week,