When you’re facilitating, coaching or managing, try these magic phrases and questions (pulled from this outstanding Twitter thread):
- Instead of asking “Any questions?” at the end of a talk or presentation, ask: “What questions do you have for me?” or “What questions does this raise for you?” It can dramatically increase participation.
- Ask: “What did you notice/what jumped out at you?” or “What’s one thing you noticed/what’s one thing that jumped out at you?”
- After a pair and share activity, ask: “Who can tell us something insightful your partner just said?”
- When discussing complex materials or presentations, ask your own questions about it out loud. (e.g., “Something I wondered when I read this was…” or “Something I found confusing here was…“).
- “Turn to your neighbor for a minute. What’s your joint question?”
- At the end of a discussion: “OK, we’ve said this, this, and this (summarizing points). What other perspectives have we missed?”
- Ask: “what surprised you?” about a presentation, project, discussion, etc. Often elicits interesting answers.
- “Who disagrees?” or “who sees it differently?” instead of “does anyone disagree?”
- At the end of a meeting or session: “What’s the most important thing you learned or are taking away? And: what questions do you still have?“