The more I learn, the more I realise I have so much to learn. I don’t have all the answers and you don’t have all the answers but how wonderful is life, particularly at work, that we have the opportunity to grow and help develop others.

Surely, we don’t assume we have all the answers, and surely, we don’t believe we haven’t got time to ask questions. Who are we not to ask questions? Who are we to limit our employee’s growth and learning?

Many of us enjoy being leaders because we feel deeply satisfied when we help develop our staff. It is satisfying to see people in our care grow and succeed. It is motivating when we inspire those around us to contribute to organisational goals and feel valued at their place of work.

In busy service environments, when frontline leaders are not always present or accessible to troubleshoot or assist, leading with questions becomes a crucial skill in order to equip and empower staff to create solutions when placed in new environments or when stretched outside of their comfort zone.

By asking questions, you are encouraging your staff to think for themselves and you are teaching them the cause-and-effect relationship of their decisions.

We forget that developing staff is a long-term game, not a short-term solution. We bark out orders, we fixate on what we have to do to get the results. However, we have to get to know our staff, to invest time in our employees, in order for them to deliver exceptional customer experiences.

When leaders direct staff they:

  • teach them to become dependent on us
  • limit their brain flexibility
  • narrow their perspective
  • encourage old patterns of thinking and behaviour.

When leaders develop staff they:

  • encourage creative thinking.
  • access more and better information
  • allow for greater brain flexibility and form new patterns in their brains
  • teach them to think for themselves

How well do you ask questions, questions that develop people and get them doing all the thinking?

Jaquie Scammell
‘Love Being in Service’

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