Inquisitive Questioning

Last night, my daughter asked me, “Is Magic Real?” I was stumped. It’s such a great question to come from a five year old. However, I responded with “No!”  She looked at me strangely and I retracted and repeated with the answer, “I don’t know!” That felt much better.

Earlier that day I had viewed a lecture, on-line through Stanford University, which discussed the need to create a learning environment for children which encouraged ‘critical thinking questions’ – a new approach to Pedagogy (traditionally instruction based to memorize). It was obvious that I needed to review my notes! I should have responded with another question to get her thinking for herself!

Asking critical thinking questions resonates with me, as I create adult business conversations which incorporate ‘question & answer’ sessions and generally people struggle to ask ‘inquisitive’ questions on their own. Asking teams to do the same often creates better questions. Our schooling is at fault here as many don’t possess the strength of asking inquisitive questions however we can all borrow the great questions lurking out there.

Being inquisitive and exploring the territory of ‘Why’ questions can and will produce a paradigm shift. Can you imagine moving from the initial greeting questions of “What do you do?” to ‘Why do you do what you do?” I think you’ll create a magic conversation by asking that alone!