Ask Great Questions: Socratic Leadership Skills


Seasoned leaders who ask great questions are to be admired. It is like watching a great conductor, musician or athlete who just seems to know what to play. This rare ability is one of the arts of leadership. The manner and tenor of asking questions is an artistic talent, in my view. Questions that start with “How to” or “I wish” and finish with a challenge e.g., “I wish I knew how to get this done,” are great questions because they elicit the best from team members. Great leaders (like great thinkers in Socrates’ mold) are humble enough to share their biggest challenges with their teams and ask them to answer them.

One of the best ways to being a great manager is to hone your skills on how to unleash the potential of your employees. This requires you to not just be a manager but a coach with the ability to ask powerful questions that bring out the best in people around you.




Abstracted from these three articles –

The Four Questions Great Leaders Ask – by Mike Maddock in Forbes

Ask Great Questions: Leadership Skills Of Socrates – by Mike Lindenmayer in Forbes

Be a Manager that Matters: ASK 12 Powerful Questions to Unleash Your Employees Potential – by Gary Magenta in Business2Community

2 Responses

  1. John Culy says:

    Thought provoking.
    There is a problem with the interaction between being a positive leader – positive, inspiring and directing – and yet stepping back to encourage contributions to policy and change. Two different persons.
    Not impossible but…

    John Cully
    Chairman JTC Associates Ltd

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