This blog is the fourth in a series of five that explores the art of asking the proper question. In the last blog I looked at solution-focused questions. In this blog I offer some examples of solution-focused questions.
Examples of solution-focused questions
The following examples are offered tentatively and as suggestions only. Please note, this is not an exhaustive list, and certainly not one you would work through from beginning to end. In getting started, you might like to select one or two to try out, as appropriate and relevant to the conversation. You might also like to add your own to this list!
– What is the most important thing for you/us to be talking about right now?
– What is the best possible outcome you are hoping for?
– What would you like to happen that’s not happening now?
– What do you hope to achieve from doing that? What would that give you?
– Imagine you/your workplace twelve months from now. What would you like to be happening?
– You have identified a number of issues and concerns. Which one is the most important one to start with?
– What seems most achievable or manageable for you right now?
Exploring what’s happening
– What’s currently happening?
– Can you tell me a little more about that?
– Can you give me an example of what that looks like?
– What are others noticing about what’s happening?
– What are your thoughts/feelings about what’s happening?
– At what times throughout the day is this issue most evident/less evident?
– When is the issue not happening/less of a concern? How is this different to other times?
– What has worked for you in the past?
– How can you move closer towards your goal?
– What is the first step you could take?
– Who can support you in making this change?
– What support would you like from me?
– What might be the pros and cons (or costs and benefits) of this course of action?
– I wonder if there might be other possibilities you/we haven’t thought about?
– Which of the options we discussed is the best possible fit for you right now?
– How confident are you about taking this step? What would need to happen for you to feel more confident?
– What are some of the obstacles that might get in the way? What can you do to overcome these obstacles should they arise?
– Would you like to add a suggestion from me? (Offered tentatively and with permission)
– How will you keep track of your progress? Measure your steps forward?
– When would you like to check in again to see how things are going?
Exploring progress and next steps
– What’s changed? How are things different?
– What are you most excited about/most proud of?
– What worked well? What didn’t work so well?
– What did you learn?
– How would you do things differently next time?
– What barriers have you overcome? How did you do this?
– Where to from here? What are your next steps you will take?
– Now that you have made some progress towards your goal, how will you ensure you stay on track?
Grant, A. M. (n.d.). The GROW Coaching Checklist [Handout]. Retrieved from http://www.leadersfirst.com/pdf/Grow%20Coaching%20Tool.pdf