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Smart Questions: The Essential Strategy for Successful Managers

Called "a must" by Norman Vincent Peale, this definitive guide shows you how to ask for the most from your staff-and get it!

"Revolutionary...invaluable insights."-Robert L. Shook, author of "Hardball"

"A comprehensive guide to sharpening your questioning skills."-Michael LeBoeuf, author of "How to Win Customers" and "Keep Them for Life"



  • Contents
  • Acknowledgments
  • Introduction
  • Part One: The System
    • 1 The Quiz: Part One
      • Introduction
      • Do You Use Questions Enough?
      • Answers
      • Scoring
    • 2 The Power of Questions
      • A Boon to Managers
      • When to Use Smart Questions
        • Persuading People
        • Getting Information
        • Planting Ideas
        • Clearing up Thinking
        • Motivating Employees
        • Problem Solving
        • Taking the Sting out of Criticism
        • Opening Communication between Diverse Groups
        • Reducing Mistakes
        • Overcoming Objections
        • Getting Cooperation
        • Clarifying Statements
        • Stemming Anxiety
        • Defusing Volatile Encounters
        • Reducing Risks
      • An Immediate Effect
    • 3 The Right Way to Ask
      • The Two Types of Questions
      • Creating Smart Questions
      • Ten Smart Open Questions
      • "Feeling" Questions
      • Combine Questions with Third-Party Endorsements
      • Questions Are Socially Appealing
      • Practice Makes It Happen
    • 4 Questions That Backfire
      • Dangerous Questions
      • Manipulative Devices
      • Showing Off with Questions
      • Too Curious
      • Asking at the Wrong Time
      • Too Many Questions
      • Answering a Question with Another Question
      • Dumb Question Rating Scale
      • More Stupid Questions
    • 5 Making the Question Fit the Person
      • Identifying Personalities
      • The Commanders
      • Asking Questions of a Commander
      • The Convincers
      • Asking Questions of Convincers
      • The Carers
      • Asking Questions of Carers
      • The Calculators
      • Asking Questions of Calculators
      • The Creators
      • Asking Questions of Creators
      • Personality Combinations
      • What Personality Type Are You?
    • 6 The Smart Questions System
      • Step One: The Windup
      • Step Two: The Delivery
      • Step Three: The Response
      • Are You a Good Listener?
      • Step Four: The Evaluation
      • Step Five: The Payoff
      • Five Steps for Best Results with the Smart Questions System
  • Part Two: Getting The Most From Your Staff
    • 7 The Quiz: Part Two
      • Are You Getting the Most from Your Staff?
      • Answers
      • Scoring
    • 8 Quality Staffing: The Right Stuff
      • Creating the Essential Job Profile
      • What Type of Person Does Your Team Need?
      • What Is the Hidden Job Description?
      • What Are the Success Factors?
      • How Well Do You Want the Job Done?
      • Final Preparation of the Essential Job Profile
      • Team Fit
      • Hidden Job Description
      • Success Factors
      • Performance Standards
      • Hiring Gives You a Competitive Edge
    • 9 The Smart Questions Way to Hire
      • Begin with Open Questions
      • Matching the Essential Job Profile
      • Looking for Team Fit
      • Probing for the Hidden Job Description
      • Probing for Success Factors
      • Smart Job Performance Questions
      • Listening and Evaluating
      • What an Applicant's Questions Reveal
      • Gaining the Winning Edge
      • Ending the Interview
      • Post-Interview Analysis
      • Smart Questions for Reference Checking
      • Great All-Purpose Interview Questions
    • 10 Ask the Most from Your People—And Get It
      • Smart Questions
      • Self Questions to Get Started
      • Leadership Style
      • Self Questions to Enhance Your Flexibility
      • Golden Rules of Motivation
        • 1. Do Your People Know Your Plans?
        • 2. Do You Give Feedback?
        • 3. Do You Build on Strengths?
        • 4. Do You Give Constructive Praise?
        • 5. Do You Give Rewards?
        • 6. Do You Listen and Learn?
        • 7. Do You Set an Example?
      • Recognition of Performance
      • Self Questions to Rate Your Motivational Skills
      • Using Motivational Techniques
    • 11 Questions That Help You Delegate
      • Why Delegate?
      • Finding the Right Approach
      • Delegating Authority
      • Delegating Opportunities
      • Self Questions to Discover Opportunities
      • How Not to Delegate
      • When to Delegate
      • What to Delegate
      • Matching Assignments to People
      • Questions to Prepare the Person
      • Post-Delegation Questions
    • 12 Questions That Train and Coach
      • Feedback: The Principal Tool
      • Showing Recognition
      • Smart Questions That Train
      • Important Training Questions to Ask Yourself
      • Smart Questions That Coach
        • 1. "What did you like about what you did?"
        • 2. "If you could do it over again
        • 3. "What help do you need from me?"
      • When to Coach
      • Whom to Coach
      • Rate Your Coaching Skills
      • The Coaching Session
      • Showing Support
    • 13 Problem Solving with Problem People
      • When to Counsel
      • Pre-Counseling Self Questions
      • Counseling Questions
      • Confrontation: When Counseling Isn't Enough
      • How to Confront
      • When to Confront
      • Before the Confrontation
      • Smart Confrontation Questions
      • Letting Someone Go
      • Exit Interviews
    • 14 Performance Appraisals That Work
      • Value of Performance Appraisals
      • Timing of Appraisals
      • How Smart Questions Make Appraisals Productive
      • The Smart Questions Performance Appraisal
      • Openers
      • Exploring Questions
      • Expanding the Appraisal
      • Setting Goals
  • Part Three: Getting Ahead
    • 15 The Quiz: Part Three
      • Do You Use Questions to Get Ahead?
      • Answers
      • Scoring
      • Importance of applying Smart Questions
    • 16 Creative Ideas and Problem Solving
      • Introduction
      • Accent the Positive
      • Use Your Team to Generate New Ideas
      • Smart Questions Help Create Ideas
      • Smart Questions for Problem Solving
      • What Are Your Objectives?
      • Planning Strategy
      • Personal Goals
      • Using Your Team to Solve Problems
    • 17 Dare to Decide
      • Introduction
      • Step One: Makinq the Decision
      • Exploring Your Options
      • The Three Questions That Lead to a Winning Decision
      • Step Two: Taking Action
      • Self Questions Create Successful Action
    • 18 Sharpen Your Negotiating Skills
      • Introduction
      • Your Negotiating Style
      • Confidence
      • Know Your Counterpart
      • Reason vs. Emotion
      • The Psychological Edge
      • Smart Questions Negotiating
      • Preparation
      • Questions for Opening Bids
      • Questions That Lead to Discussion and Compromise
      • Closing Negotiations
    • 19 Negotiating a Raise
      • Introduction
      • Timing Your Request
      • Self Questions to Evaluate Your Timing
      • Establishing Your Value
      • Choose Your Strategy
      • The Straightforward Approach
      • The Ultimatum Strategy
      • The Education Strategy
      • The Promotion Strategy
      • The Attitude to Take
      • A List of Don'ts
      • Setting Up the Meeting
      • Naming Your Figure
      • Smart Questions That Get Raises
      • Countering Your Boss's Strategies
      • Smart Questions Can Get You Promoted
    • 20 Finding a Job with a Future
      • Introduction
      • Figuring Out the Path
      • Five Steps to a Top Job
      • Your Career and Confidence Inventory
      • Your Mailing List
      • The Letter
      • The Telephone Call
      • Interview Goals
      • Positioning Yourself
      • The Smart Questions Interview
      • Opening Gambits
      • Staying with the Interview
      • Specific Job-Related Questions
      • Team-Related Questions
      • Company-Related Questions
      • Questions for Your Future
      • Countering Questions During the Interview
      • Tough Questions to Answer
      • Talking Money
    • 21 Tuning In to the Corporate Culture
      • Introduction
      • Corporate Style
      • Smart Self Questions for Getting Ahead
      • Hidden Messages
      • Smart Questions for Tuning In
      • Adjusting Your Style
      • Tuning Up Your Image
      • Self Questions about Your Image
      • The Courage to Change
    • 22 Rising Stars and Powerful People
      • Introduction
      • Ability
      • Always Say Yes?
      • " … And the Very Very Smooth"
      • Visibility
      • Visibility and Power
      • Increasing Your Visibility
      • Self Questions to Enhance Your Performance
      • Publicity
      • Filling the Vacuum
      • Identifying the Opportunities
      • Help from Powerful People
      • Self Questions for Choosing a Mentor
      • Having a Mentor

 

“The greatest danger in times of turbulence is not turbulence; it is to act with yesterday’s logic”. — Peter Drucker


The shift from manual workers who do as they are being told — either by the task or by the boss — to knowledge workers who have to manage themselves ↓ profoundly challenges social structure

Managing Oneself is a REVOLUTION in human affairs.” … “It also requires an almost 180-degree change in the knowledge workers’ thoughts and actions from what most of us—even of the younger generation—still take for granted as the way to think and the way to act.” …

… “Managing Oneself is based on the very opposite realities: Workers are likely to outlive organizations (and therefore, employers can’t be depended on for designing your life), and the knowledge worker has mobility.” ← in a context

 

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These pages are attention directing tools for navigating a world moving toward unimagined futures.

It’s up to you to figure out what to harvest and calendarize
working something out in time (1915, 1940, 1970 … 2040 … the outer limit of your concern)nobody is going to do it for you.

It may be a step forward to actively reject something (rather than just passively ignoring) and then figure out a coping plan for what you’ve rejected.

Your future is between your ears and our future is between our collective ears — it can’t be otherwise. A site exploration starting point

 

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