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Article No.: 16-7, July 1, 2016

Article Title:  Quality Dialogue Questions:  A Tool for Facilitating Real Conversations

Author: Linda Gravett, Ph.D, SHRM-SCP

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Have you ever tried to engage a staff member in a conversation about their ideas for improving their job, enhancing their department’s contributions or their own professional development……and the other person was noncommittal at best?  Maybe you’re not asking the right questions.  Below is a list of open-ended questions that I’ve used for several years in my own or in client organizations that are designed to engage employees in a deep conversation.  Just ask the other person to fill in the blank, and ask probe questions to dig deeper.  This can be accomplished one-on-one or in staff meetings with a group of people.  Try it, and I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised at the quality level of the discussion that ensues.

  1. I’ve always wondered why we…
  2. I don’t think we spend enough time…
  3. I think we should focus on…
  4. Our success lies in…
  5. We are missing a business opportunity with…
  6. I would like to be able to…
  7. Everyone knows that…but is afraid to talk about it.
  8. Our meetings would be more effective if…
  9. I’ve noticed that…
  10. Our customers would be happier if…
  11. I’d like to see more…in our organization.
  12. I think this is the right time to…
  13. I’d like for us to try…

 
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