What is the ratio of questions you ask versus statements you make?
Questions drive results. In the fable ‘Change Your Questions, Change Your Life’, Marilee Adams writes the most effective communication is about 20 percent telling and 80 percent asking.
Focus on questions and curiosity rather than answers and opinions
The ability to think productively rather than reactively lies at the heart of Adams’ QuestionThinking. Quick judgments, fixed perspectives and old opinions are out. Instead use questions for exploration, discovery, innovation and cooperation.
Accomplishments come from all the people you’re working with, not just from your solitary work.
Ask questions to--
Create understanding and learning
Build, improve and sustain relationships
Clarify and confirm listening
Stimulate creativity and innovation
Are you committed to being right?
If only one person can be right, you, then everybody else has to be wrong. It’s a collaboration of one. Enormous energy goes into being right. It’s exhausting. Find fulfillment in not finding fault. Instead commit to helping create an energetic, optimistic workplace where people contribute every day. Let go of the need to be right.
If you work with someone who needs to be right, you can tell her she is right and then give your point of view.
Change Your Questions, Change Your Life: 7 Powerful Tools for Life and Work
By Marilee Adams, 2004; Berrett-Koehler Publishers, 170 pages