Friday, April 3, 2015

The Art of Asking questions

 Organizations always seeking to make right decision based on goals they are trying to achieve (Pohlmann, 2015). One effective way is to highlight a full picture about the subject which can be done by asking questions." If the question works, it must be a good question" (Payne, 1951, p.3). That’s why it's imperative to slow down to ask more and better questions. "You should steer a conversation by asking the right kinds of questions, based on the problem you’re trying to solve" (Pohlmann, 2015). There are four types of question to achieve different goals.

Consider these four types of questions - Clarifying, Adjoining, Funneling, and Elevating- each aimed at achieving a different goals. The first one is clarifying questions which used to get better understanding of what has been discussed. The second type is adjoining questions which can be used to explore the unknown related facts that are ignored. It helps to get broader understanding of a problem or a subject. The third one is funneling questions that allow searching deeper inside and reaching root cause of the problem. Understand the bigger picture can be by using elevating questions by highlighting bigger field to see the connections of problems (Pohlmann, 2015).

In recent years, people get the opportunity to ask and get answers of verity topics from social media networking like Facebook and Twitter. According to a study explored the phenomenon of using social media through a survey of 624 Microsoft employees, it shows that employees asked subjective questions to their friends to provide specific responses. "Twitter is a popular micro-blogging social network and people ask and answer questions during their natural use of Twitter" (Paul, Hong & Chi, 2011).

Asking question may not get the specific information a person want to hear or delivered answer just contains wrong information. One way to get the right answer is not interrupt the person while answering. Sometimes it is useful to avoid ended-questions and replace it with open-ended questions to get a clear deep answer. Finally, Use the Power of Silence to give the opportunity to listen and understand the answer (Martel, n.d).    




Paul S., Hong L., & Chi E. (2011). Is Twitter a Good Place for Asking Questions? A Characterization Study.

Payne, S. L. (1951). The Art of Asking questions. United States of America: Princeton Legacy Library.

Pohlmann, T. & Thomas, N (2015). Relearning the Art of Asking Questions.

Martel, M. How to Be Amazingly Good at Asking Questions. Retrieved from: