Six Questions That Can Save Your Team

Six Questions That Can Save Your Team True intuitive expertise is learned from prolonged experience with good feedback on mistakes.

Daniel Kahneman

6 ways to save your team

I probably reference executive coach and author Marshal Goldsmith at least once a week in Learn iT! classes. I like that he’s practical, insightful and inspirational. Primarily, I encourage students to go to his website to download free leadership and management resources.

Recently, he contributed an article to the Harvard Business Review where he recommends leaders schedule one-on-one feedback sessions every other month.

He offers six questions to organize them.

  • Where are we going?
    • Think big picture priorities
  • Where are you going?
    • Take it personally
  • What is going well?
    • Openly recognize recent achievements
  • Where can we improve?Offer constructive suggestions
  • How can I help you?
    • Add needed value without interfering or imposing
  • How can you help me?
    • Asking for ongoing help and focusing on improvement encourages others to do the same

When we apply this structure to feedback, both parties can leave feeling positive about the interaction and motivated to make any behavior changes necessary.

If there is confusion or ambiguity on direction, coaching or feedback, team members are encouraged to let the leader know immediately.

It’s a lot easier, and more sustainable to embark on behavior change with structure, support and consistent opportunity to be held accountable for our transformation.

We can all get a little closer to Daniel Kanheman’s notion of “intuitive expertise” when we engage in productive conversations about performance improvement.  Using Goldsmith’s six question structure every other month can help us do just that.


Jennifer Albrecht, Vice President of Professional Development, has been teaching and consulting with Learn iT! since 1997. Since joining Learn iT!, Jennifer has built and facilitated all of Learn iT!’s Professional Development classes including Communication, Leadership, Negotiating and Decision Making.

Jennifer strongly believes in Learn iT!’s 8 Step Model for Learning and applies it in all of the classes she builds and facilitates. Further information on the 8 Step Model can be found here.