OPEN QUESTIONS

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LEARNING HOW TO ask good questions is an excellent skill.
 

In the hustle of daily life we may not get the oppurtuity to practise our communication skills not even in our personal life and with our family members.  When so much of our communication is done by mobile phone and computer it can become unusual to have a real, shared encounter with another human. 
 
Making an INQUIRY using open questions will invite a listener to join with you in a conversation. These sorts of questions will also help you to tune into the other person in a meaningful way.  Taking into account factors like their age and experience.  For example talking with a six your old is different to a 16 year old or asking an elder.
 
Maiia Brindle

CLOSED QUESTIONS are useful at work, where you may only want facts and figures.  They're quick and easy questions to answer.  They will generally have only the one right answer like true and false or yes and no. Or they can be be answered by a single word, a number or a short phrase.

 

"What are you - a policeman?" Closed questions keep the control of the conversation with the person that is doing the asking. It's good to remember that outside a business environment, in our personal life, closed questions can make a person feel like they want to escape from being interrogated.

Open ended questions on the other hand can help us in building healthy relationships. Ones with understanding, trust and rapport.  We get to know the persons style and their needs and likewise, they can learn about us as well. Open questions are useful when you want to invite long answers, reflection, thinking and sharing.
 
Open ended questions OPEN UP the conversation for a range of answers. Not necessarily right or wrong or measurable.  They often start with who, what, where, when, why and how.
  
What will you do if...?
Where do you think you'll be in five years? 
When you did that previously...?
Why will this help?
How did you think it went?
 
HISTORICAL INQUIRY: this style of questioning seeks to find out how the past is influencing the present.  You're gathering information about the past in order to see how it effects them today.  You're giving the person oppurtunity to speak about their own past experiences and observations - in the present.
 
Being Present As well as working out an appropriate developmental stage/ age.
 Tuning in to another person includes learning about the pace at which they think and speak and takes into account their emotional state.   Then your questioning can become attuned to match their style and personalty.  
 

 
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