The best way to empower your teachers is to ask questions that spur their curiosity and creativity. Here are some techniques:


  • Challenge the conventional wisdom. Ask questions that move people away from the tried-and-true and help them think more creatively. For example: “What if we give our product away to every 10th caller on Tuesdays?”


  • Change the perspective. Pose questions that take a higher view of a problem—that encourage people to think of the long term or the broader implications. “How will this change affect the competition? What will happen to the marketplace as a result?”


  • Include the entire organization. Frame questions that address the needs of your organization and the people in it. “If we eliminate unnecessary paperwork, what will happen in the accounting department?”


  • Spur excitement. Ask questions that get people excited about possibilities and potential (and not afraid of the price of failure). “Do you see any reason why we shouldn’t put this idea into action right away?”