An effective coach says less and asks more.

7 Essential Questions

  1. Kickstart
  2. Awe
  3. Focus
  4. Foundation
  5. Lazy
  6. Strategic
  7. Learning

Kickstart Question

What’s on your mind?

Open and invites people to share what’s most important to them

Use 3P model to focus – People, Project, Patterns

Awe Question

And what else?

Quickest and easiest way to uncover new possibilities

Ask at least 3 times and no more than 5

Ask until “There’s nothing else”

Ask “Is there anything else?” if too long, it signals closure

Focus Question

What’s the real challenge here for you?

Spend time to solve the real problem, not the first one

Stick to What. Why gets people to be defensive. for example:

What made you chose this course of action?

Foundation Question

What do you really want?

Stops them in their tracks and gets them think

Increase TERA quotient

  • Tribe – “Are you against me or with me?”
  • Expectation – Do I know the future or don’t I?
  • Rank – Are you more or less important than me?
  • Autonomy – Do I get a say or don’t I?

Lazy Question

How can I help?

What do you want from me?

Forces them to make a direct and clear request. Also stops you from thinking you know best to leap into action.

Strategic Question

If you’re saying Yes to this, what are you saying No to?

What could be being fully committed to the idea look like?

Brings things into sharper focus and gets them to commit fully

Learning Question

What was most useful for you?

Reframes that you were useful and at the same time asks for their help.


Kyaw Wai Yan Tun

Hi, I'm Wai Yan. I love designing visuals and writing insightful articles online. I see it as my way of making the world a more beautiful and insightful place.