The Power of Dialogue: How Asking Better Questions Can Boost Team Performance

 In Leadership Advice, Team building, Time Management

As a manager, you may be looking for ways to motivate your team and improve their performance. While it’s true that true motivation must come from within, there are steps you can take to create an environment that encourages your team to be more responsive and invested in their work.

One simple way to do this is by asking better questions. Often, managers fall into the routine of asking close-ended questions focused solely on results. However, these questions leave no room for discussion or coaching, and may leave your team feeling undervalued.

Instead, try asking open-ended questions focused on activity and strategy. For example, instead of asking “where are we numbers-wise?”, try asking “let’s talk about the New Jersey territory and where it fits in your overall plan.” By doing this, you create a dialogue that encourages your team to share their thoughts and ideas, leading to teachable moments and coaching opportunities.

It’s important to practice active listening during these conversations, as your team may share surprising insights that you can use to improve your management style. By opening up a dialogue, you can create a more positive work environment that encourages your team to be more invested in their work, leading to better performance and results. Remember, as a manager, your role is to lead and manage, and asking better questions is one way to do this effectively.

Coaching Assignment:

Come up with three open-ended, activity-related questions to ask your team. Write them down so that you can use them at the next opportunity. (Parents-this works great for kids too!)

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