Interrogations & Conversations

2 minute read
February 9, 2020

A practice I’ve been trying to implement is that of asking open-ended questions.

My default behavior is to make statements in the form of a question: 

As I have been paying more attention to how I ask questions I’m realizing how I tend to use these statements-couched-in-questions. Essentially, these are more akin to interrogations than they are to questions.  

When I am asked a question there are times I prefer having the option of a yes/no response. However, more frequently I appreciate being invited to participate in a conversation. Being asked what I think about ___, or how I feel regarding___, or what’s my opinion on ___ has proven to be a more effective way to invite dialogue. 

Compare the example questions above with the following reframed as open-ended question: 

See how this simple change welcomes the input from the person being asked? Maybe they didn't learn anything about queueing, but they now have the invitation to share what they did learn.

So, do you like open-ended questions?

... or, should I say, what is your experience with interrogations versus open-ended questions?