LogoNew

 

PO Box 964

Cambridge 3450

New Zealand

Ph: +64 7 823 9491


Email: The Music Shed

Home   Vocal   Student Leadership   Business   Groups   Resources  Who We Are   Contact Us

Please print this article if you wish.

 

Reframing Questions – A Short Coaching

Look at the following examples of some questions we often ask in business - but they work just as well in our personal lives. Read the left hand column first, then the right hand column and then compare the two columns side by side.

Whilst you’re doing this jot down how you feel as you ask first the left hand set, then the right hand set.

Set One

How do you feel?

 

 

Why didn’t you hit your target?

 

Why did this happen?

 

Where did it all start to go wrong?

 

Why do you think you’re not good at this?

 

What’s wrong with your team?

 

Why did you do that?

 

Who is responsible for this?

 

Why isn’t this working?

 

 

 

How do you feel?

Set Two

 

 

 

What do you need to do next time to hit your targets?

 

What do you want to achieve here?

 

What do you need to do to move this forward?

 

How can you develop strength in this area?

 

What does your team need to do to win?

 

What do you want to do next?

 

Who can achieve this?

 

What do we need to make this work?

 

 

Set One is Problem Focused

Set Two is Solution Focused

 

 

Why didn’t you hit your target?

What do you need to do next time to hit your targets?

Why did this happen?

What do you want to achieve here?

Where did it all start to go wrong?

What do you need to do to move this forward?

Why do you think you’re not good at this?

How can you develop strength in this area?

What’s wrong with your team?

What does your team need to do to win?

Why did you do that?

What do you want to do next?

Who is responsible for this?

Who can achieve this?

Why isn’t this working?

What do we need to make this work?

Notice how the “why” is used in many problem-focused questions, yet there is no use of that word in the solution-focused ones.  Even the “what” problem question is reworded to give a positive use of the word “what”.

By consciously removing the word “why” from your conversations, you will focus on solution orientated questions – and therefore have a better chance at finding the answer quite quickly.  By making sure that the “what” question is a solution-focused one (using other ways of asking the same question but in a positive way) you empower the listened to do something, rather than defend their position.

This is called “reframing” – if we reframe in the moment by choice we will focus on solutions.

It is a habit that takes time to develop (like any habit).

So before having a conversation with someone about a “why” situation, spend time trying to re-write the question into a “what” or “who” or “how”.  It pays to write the question down and then write it again using the solution-focused language.  Don’t forget the “what” and “what positive” questions!

What is most important in these reframed questions is that the other person is being asked to do the thinking – you are not thinking for them.

Thinking for them will supply your answer from your experiences hard-wired into your brain.  But that is not what you’re looking for – you want them to find the solutions.  Therefore they have to find the answers in their brains.

Takes a whole lot less effort when they do the thinking!

There’s another part to this getting people to think “stuff” (technical term) – using a question that makes them think in answer to a question.

  • Question: “Honey, where did I leave my car keys?”
  • Reply: “Where do you think you left them?”
But that’s another coaching!
 

Creating Possibilities and Finding Solutions


© The Music Shed & The Business Shed 2007 - 2014
Web Design by The Music Shed © 2014