This post is Part 7 in a series on asking good questions–whether in a coaching/mentoring context or in relationship-building in general. (You can read Part 6 here.)
I’ve enjoyed this summer writing about good questions. I’ll continue to do that from time to time, because the topic is vital to our growth, self-discovery, and organizational progress. Here’s a final question (for now) which helps us along the pathway of learning to ask good questions. It’s great for group discussion, but it can be used one-on-one very effectively. And it helps us grow.
“What’s the best question you’ve ever been asked?”
In most cases, the immediate response is, “Good question!”, followed by a pensive several seconds of pondering. Usually people come up with something, but if they don’t I just volunteer one. “I can remember when someone asked me, ‘If you did it again, what would you do differently?‘, and it was timely and helpful. What’s a really good question–or even the best question–you’ve been asked?”
So, go ahead. I dare you. Use that with someone you know or someone you bump into. You’ll have fun with this, and you’ll learn from it.
99 Problems but Questions Aren’t One of Them
Speaking of, 99 Powerful Questions for Christian Leaders was just published by my friends Steve Ogne and Dave DeVries. Years and years and years ago Steve and I published something called Empowering Leaders Through Coaching, It was a workbook with cassette tapes of our teaching. For example:
Tom: “Steve, why did Cinderella make a lousy church planter?”
Steve: “I don’t know, Tom. Why was Cinderella a lousy church planter?”
Tom: “Because she had a pumpkin for a coach.” (Thank you, you’ve been great.)
Anyway, it’s a thrill for me to see Steve and Dave come out with a succinct resource of awesome questions to have at the ready. I recommend it. Keep adding great questions to your toolbox and all of us will be better for it.