Surprising to some, answers are not the most potent tool a coach has. Questions are! Questions empower people to invent their own answers and solutions, thus developing them for future challenges.
To discover new possible actions or to move your players toward their intended objectives, always ask these 5 most powerful questions:
- What must happen? What specific, interim outcomes should be accomplished in the timeframe to achieve your ultimate objective? Depending on the objective, this could be the next day, week, or month.
- Why do you think so? Examine reasons for the selection of interim outcomes. Are there more important or more urgent outcomes that may have been overlooked?
- How might that be accomplished? Explore a number of approaches and alternatives. Keep exploring until all known options are exhausted and begin to create new ones. Select actions from the list that will help achieve the interim or partial outcomes.
- Who will/could be the one(s) to do it? Who will perform the tasks? Is it you or should you delegate the action to an employee or request a colleague to do it?
- When must this be accomplished? Set specific dates of completion for each of your objectives.
Responses to these five questions will form a plan to help players realize their objectives. But, it shouldn’t stop there. Arm yourself with a cornucopia of possible questions. Then, and only then, can you unlock new creative pathways and help your player achieve their dreams.