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One of the oldest jokes we can remember is the story of the little boy standing outside the door of a house. A door-to-door salesman approaches him and asks, ‘son, is your mother at home?’ ‘Yes,’ replies the little boy. The salesman knocks on the door but receives no reply. After several minutes of knocking with no response he turns angrily to the boy and says, ‘Hey, I thought you said your mother was at home.’ ‘she is,’ replies the boy, ‘but I don’t live here!’

The moral of that story is that if you don’t ask the right question, you p...


Cover of Coaching and Mentoring, 2nd Edition


If you don’t ask productive questions, you’re not likely to get productive answers. A meaningful coaching or mentoring session depends on using questions that provoke a response that enhances learning. Discover the kinds of questions to ask – and those to avoid.