Ritual Questions Help Inform Effective Leaders

You are never too old to learn something new. And at no point should we stop piquing our curiosity or expanding our mind into new avenues. In fact, leaders who have the most impact and are most effective are inquisitive, according to an article by Eric J. McNulty from strategy+business.

A Quest for Mindfulness

When you are curious by nature you tend to ask a lot of questions and then reflect upon those answers. Well, not everyone is this way. So to improve your leadership skills and style, you can build this type of reflection into your agenda and your employees alike by incorporating “ritual questions.”

The effectiveness and importance of having ritual questions is they allow you to give your brain time to process the immense amount of data you come in contact with daily. This reflection “is an effort to understand how the events of our life shape the way in which we see the world, ourselves, and others,” according to Colonel Eric Kail, former course director of military leadership at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point.

Questions such as “When was I at my best today? When was I at my Worst?” can help you prompt and guide your thinking. Do not underestimate the value of setting aside a mere 10 minutes for quiet reflection. You never know what insights you may uncover.

Another ritual question such as “What do we know today that we didn’t know yesterday?” will be effective in pushing you to probe more intensely. It is easy to spout off “nothing” as the answer, when in actuality that is probably not accurate or satisfying. McNulty continues to say this:

True leaders build capacity and capability in people for tackling tomorrow’s challenges while meeting today’s goals; it is a matter of cultivating performance rather than simply extracting value. Answering ritual questions will help build the self-awareness necessary for growth in both you and your team.

Here are some more ritual questions to consider in closing: “What encounter did I handle particularly well today and why?” “What encounter do I believe the other person in the exchange thinks I handled well and why?” “What encounter did I handle poorly today and why?” “What encounter do I believe the other person in the exchange thinks I handled poorly and why?”

You can access the original article here:

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