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How To Use Key Questions To Build Better Teams

Livia Jenvey |  July 24, 2017

As a business leader and or manager, you probably spend a good part of your day answering questions.  Your team members may be routinely contacting you either via email, phone, instant message, or even stopping by your desk to ask one question after another knowing you have their answers. 

Most of the time this is needed, as it is part of getting the job done.  However there may also be times you feel that some of these questions are not needed and are in fact taking too much out of your day, preventing you from getting your job done.

If, in your current work situation, you feel overloaded by constant questions you don’t need to answer, here is a quick exercise that can help.  This exercise is one I recommend to clients who are faced with similar team overload question scenarios.  This helps develop your team into effective leaders who can cipher out questions that you do need to provide feedback if it is needed.

How this exercise works, is when you have someone coming to you who are asking questions you feel you don’t need to provide feedback for, turn their question around by asking them these key questions in the following order:

1. Begin asking them: “What do you think about this…?”

This first question will get the asker to begin to think about the details behind their question(s). As well as gets them to begin to determine if they already have the answer to the question they asked you.

2.  Once they have given you some feedback to your first question above, follow-up by asking them: “Why do you think that way regarding this…?”

This second question will help the asker get solidified in their answer to their own question quickly.  This follow-up question may help them realize they answered their own question.    

The goal then is each time you get questions, practice this exercise.  Over time your team will begin to understand that before they come to you, they should ask themselves those questions.

This will develop your team members into more critical thinkers before they ask you their typical questions.  The benefit for you is two fold you will gain more time in your day and your employees will become more self sufficient in their productivity.

Try this exercise out today the next time you feel you are getting overloaded with questions that are not needed and see how this works for you.


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