As professional facilitators and coaches, we often encounter clients or teams who feel stuck in their progress, unable to move forward or overcome obstacles. Asking powerful questions can help uncover insights, shift perspectives, and create momentum towards finding solutions. In this blog post, we'll explore two sets of coaching questions: one for individuals who feel stuck and another for teams who are hitting roadblocks and not sure how to progress.
Coaching Questions for Stuck Individuals
When working with clients who feel stuck, our role as coaches is to help them gain a better understanding of the situation, explore their thoughts and feelings, and identify potential pathways to progress.
Here are 20 questions to ask your client:
- Can you describe the situation where you feel stuck?
- What have you tried so far to move forward?
- What do you think is the main obstacle or challenge that is holding you back?
- Have you experienced a similar situation in the past? If so, how did you overcome it?
- What would you like to achieve or what outcome are you seeking?
- What are the potential consequences if you remain stuck in this situation?
- Can you identify any limiting beliefs or assumptions that may be contributing to your feeling of being stuck?
- If you had all the resources, knowledge, and support you needed, what would you do differently?
- Who or what can help you gain a fresh perspective on this situation?
- What would be the smallest step you can take right now to create momentum?
- Can you break down your goal or challenge into smaller, more manageable tasks?
- What are some alternative approaches you haven't considered yet?
- How does your current situation align with your values and priorities?
- Are there any opportunities for growth or learning in this situation?
- What is one thing you can do today to make progress, no matter how small?
- How can you reframe your mindset or change your perspective to see the situation in a different light?
- What would you advise a friend in a similar situation?
- How will you know when you have successfully moved past this stuck point?
- What resources, support, or tools do you need to move forward?
- When you imagine your future self looking back at this moment, what advice would they give you?
By asking these questions, you can guide your client towards self-reflection, self-awareness, and ultimately, self-empowerment. Clients will likely discover new perspectives, recognize limiting beliefs, and identify actionable steps to break through their stuckness.
Questions for Stuck Teams
When working with teams who feel stuck, our role as facilitators is to help them navigate their challenges by encouraging open communication, collaboration, and the sharing of diverse perspectives.
Here are 20 questions to ask a team:
- Can each team member briefly describe their understanding of the current situation?
- What are the specific goals and objectives the team is trying to achieve?
- What do you think are the main challenges or obstacles the team is facing?
- Are there any communication issues or misunderstandings that may be contributing to the team's stuckness?
- Have team members been assigned clear roles and responsibilities?
- How well are team members collaborating and supporting each other?
- Are there any external factors or influences impacting the team's progress?
- Can you identify any gaps in skills, resources, or information that the team may need to address?
- What has the team tried so far to overcome the challenges and move forward?
- Are there any best practices or successful examples from similar situations that the team can learn from?
- How can the team break down the larger goals into smaller, more manageable tasks?
- What are some alternative strategies or approaches the team has not yet considered?
- How can the team better leverage individual strengths and talents to overcome the current challenges?
- Are there any opportunities for growth, learning, or innovation within the current situation?
- What additional resources or support does the team need to move forward?
- Can the team establish a clear action plan with specific steps and deadlines to create momentum?
- How can the team improve communication, collaboration, and decision-making processes?
- How will the team know when they have successfully moved past the stuck point?
- What methods can the team implement to track progress and maintain accountability?
- How can the team celebrate milestones and achievements along the way to maintain motivation and engagement?
These questions are designed to help the team uncover the root cause of their stuckness, identify gaps in communication or resources, and foster a collaborative environment where they can work together to find solutions.
Asking powerful questions is a vital skill for coaches and facilitators in helping individuals and teams overcome feelings of stuckness. By using these lists of questions as a starting point, you can tailor your approach to the unique needs of each client or team, guiding them towards self-discovery and forward momentum. The ultimate goal is to empower your clients and teams to find their own solutions and move past their obstacles, transforming stuckness into growth, learning, and success.
About the Author: Leigh Ann Rodgers, Founder of Better Teams, Team Consultant Academy, and FORWARD, is an IAF Certified Professional Facilitator with 20 years of experience in the human development field. Leigh Ann is a skilled meeting facilitator, trainer, and coach working across the globe to help leaders cultivate teams that are happy and high-performing.
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