How to Become a Better Leader with The Coaching Habit
Do you want to improve your leadership skills and help your team achieve more? Do you want to save time and energy by asking the right questions and avoiding unnecessary advice? Do you want to learn how to coach your people effectively and empower them to solve their own problems?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, then you need to read The Coaching Habit: Say Less, Ask More & Change the Way You Lead Forever by Michael Bungay Stanier. This book is a practical guide that teaches you how to use seven simple but powerful coaching questions to transform your conversations and your workplace.
In this article, we will summarize the main ideas of the book and show you how to apply them in your daily interactions. You will learn how to:
- Get straight to the point with The Kickstart Question
- Stay curious and avoid jumping to conclusions with The Awe Question
- Save yourself and others time and effort with The Lazy Question
- Help your team focus on what really matters with The Strategic Question
- Uncover the root cause of any challenge with The Focus Question and The Foundation Question
- Ensure that your coaching has a positive impact with The Learning Question
By following these simple steps, you will be able to coach your people more effectively, build trust and rapport, and create a culture of learning and growth in your organization. Ready to get started? Let’s dive in!
The Kickstart Question: “What’s on your mind?”
This is the best way to start any coaching conversation. It invites the other person to share what’s most important to them at the moment, without imposing your own agenda or assumptions. It also signals that you are genuinely interested and willing to listen. By asking this question, you can quickly identify the topic that needs your attention and avoid wasting time on irrelevant or superficial issues.
The Awe Question: “And what else?”
This is the best way to keep the conversation going and deepen your understanding. It helps you avoid the temptation to jump in with your own opinions, solutions, or advice, which can often be counterproductive and demotivating. Instead, it encourages the other person to explore their own thoughts and feelings more fully, and to discover new insights and possibilities. By asking this question, you can help the other person find their own answers and solutions, and avoid being the bottleneck or the expert.
The Lazy Question: “How can I help?”
This is the best way to avoid overcommitting yourself and taking on more work than you can handle. It helps you clarify what the other person expects from you and what you are willing to offer. It also prevents you from making assumptions about what they need or want, which can lead to frustration and disappointment. By asking this question, you can set clear boundaries and expectations, and empower the other person to take responsibility for their own actions and outcomes.