By Martin Cole
Effective leadership questions are at the heart of leadership.
Great leaders ask positive questions that are genuinely about the subject under discussion or the person concerned.
Effective leadership questions can generate confidence, loyalty, motivation and development. These kinds of question:
How good any question is really depends upon the context.
But here are some examples of leadership questions that, in the right context, are likely to be genuinely effective:
Poor leaders ask questions that are mainly about themselves. Poor leadership questions:
Example of ineffective leadership questions are:
You’ll no doubt have had the experience of being on the end of both ineffective and effective leadership questions of the kind mentioned in this post. I know I have.
But I only have to think of my immediate emotional reaction to poor questioning – dismay, lost confidence, demotivation – to remind me of the need to make sure that my own questions prompt the right kinds of response.
I'm Martin Cole. I am a UK qualified lawyer, a leader within the financial services regulatory and compliance sector and an organisational and executive coach. I have an Master of Science (M.Sc). in coaching psychology and am certified as a coach by the Institute of Executive Coaching and Leadership. I also have a Bachelor of Laws (LLB (Hons.)) and was admitted as a barrister by the Inner Temple (now non-practising). I have lived and worked in London and Sydney and now live near Edinburgh in Scotland with my wife and two daughters. I support Crystal Palace FC, have wide ranging musical tastes (especially Jazz, Blues and Soul) and oppose mediocrity, selfishness and organisations that fail to value their people.
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