What question of the day for work can “coaches” present to their employees? Your job as a manager should be “work coach.” This is an important task that promotes efficiency, productivity, and motivation.
Asking questions ensures that you aren’t solving your employees’ problems for them. They need to take ownership of their work. You are simply a guide, someone who provides feedback.
The art of asking questions helps a manager and the employee in many ways. Together, they can address issues early on and find areas for growth. They can also talk with an eye on the real struggle or reason for success.
Even if you’ve been in your position for many years, or even decades, you still have room to grow, too. People don’t attain positions as great managers and just stay there. Every day is an opportunity to learn something new and use it to better yourself, your employees, and your business.
Ask yourself how these questions are starters for some great daily conversations with your team.
Ideas for the Question of the Day for Work
Remember to tailor your questions to the employee at hand and the situation. These should be thought out and individualized, not a rote question-and-answer. Your employees want to feel that you are going to take their answers to heart and use them for progress.
“What are some wins you’ve experienced today/this week? What are you doing well?”
It’s always smart to start with something positive. People want their successes recognized. Appreciation and celebration create encouragement and motivation for more of the same. People often feel uncomfortable bragging about themselves a bit. However, with your allowance and expectation, they will learn that this is good for everyone.
Asking about small daily wins helps employees recognize that their eyes don’t always have to be on the big prize. It takes small steps and actions to achieve larger successes. Smaller, day-to-day achievements are what get people to big goals, so those should be celebrated, too.
Talking with employees about these little wins helps you understand their strengths. Understanding strengths gives you room to assign tasks with purpose. Team members who have purpose work much better than those who feel stuck in a rut.
Find a way within your own company to give each other small boosts of positivity throughout the day. This keeps up a culture of positivity and recognition. Ask team members for ideas, too! Some possibilities include:
- Leaving notes of affirmation or encouragement for each other in mailboxes
- A direct message computer system where people drop a quick, “Thanks,” “Great job,” or “I noticed this!”
- A whiteboard in the breakroom where team members write down things they notice or appreciate from their colleagues
“What are some of the struggles you faced this week? What help do you need to overcome them?”
Challenges and obstacles are a part of life. They’re most definitely a part of the workplace. No one escapes dealing with trials. However, learning to get past them with resilience is a sign of a valued team member.
Many people don’t address problems until it’s too late. Usually, this is when the problem has already grown and taken root, which makes it much more difficult to solve. Finding a problem at the beginning and nipping it in the bud takes far less effort.
This means that you, as the manager, must ask questions of the day at work to find these problems. If your team members knew there were issues and knew how to solve them, hopefully, they would.
There are often employees in a workplace who simply don’t want to deal with struggles. In those situations, your role is to clarify expectations and set the bar high. When you model the level of work to be done then you show your workforce what they need to deliver.
Proactivity is key here. Finding a struggle early on means that you work with the employee to guide them onto the appropriate course. You don’t have to backtrack and break bad habits. Instead, cut them out before they can take hold!
Use your role as the manager to create a positive company culture. People need to feel that they are in a safe space mentally, emotionally, and physically. Opening the conversation around struggles and offering positive help makes this a reality.
When the company culture revolves around growth, employees can help each other, too. Asking for assistance and noticing areas for improvement on the same level or team is effective; it doesn’t always have to be superior down to a lower-level employee.
Besides, encouraging your leaders to help their team members takes a lot of the workload off you. Then, you can use this question of the day for work not only to your employees but also to your department heads. This allows you a vision of how your entire office is running.
“How is your morale? Are there any feelings you’d like to share with me?”
Feelings aren’t often talked about in the workplace. Usually, people feel that the expectation is to get the job done and be quiet about it. However, human beings are doing these jobs and feelings happen whether we like it or not.
Just as with struggles and obstacles, addressing feelings from the beginning is the healthy way to go. It’s not about getting rid of the feelings, though. Instead, you want to explore and work with them.
Feelings give insight into several things in the workplace, such as:
- Company culture
- Employee strengths and weaknesses
- Relationship dynamics
- Communication styles
- Hierarchy struggles
As the boss, you are not without feelings, either. However, you will need to sometimes leave yours at the door while you are helping an employee explore theirs. If you are constantly on the defensive or telling them why their feelings are wrong, they are less likely to come to you for help.
Instead, ramp up your active listening skills. Think about how difficult it is for them to share certain things with you and acknowledge your appreciation. Ask what you can do differently to help bring about a positive atmosphere.
Then, make it a point to share your feelings with people in a safe, calm manner. Express your emotions in a way that helps them to articulate their own. This leads to a healthy environment and a culture of respect, high morale, and resilience.
“Does your job fulfill your purpose? What makes you engaged and motivated here (or what doesn’t)?”
The fact is simple: when people are satisfied and fulfilled, they produce better work. They are more successful and accomplished because of that satisfaction. Success itself doesn’t breed fulfillment.
If this comes across as new information, you aren’t alone. Our society runs on the idea that your material good, status, and accomplishments create your happiness. Unfortunately, almost everyone at high-status levels says that this 100% doesn’t bring happiness.
So, your task is to ask questions of the day at work to understand your employees’ purpose. What brings them joy? What gets them out of bed in the morning? Where do they see themselves in an ideal situation?
Your knowledge of each person’s “why” helps you guide them toward well-connected tasks. This enables them to create, problem-solve, and perform their best. It also prevents high employee turnover rates.
Asking this question reminds employees that you care about them as people, not just as a tool for profit.
“How can I serve you as your boss? What can I do to lead you better?”
We know, this might be the scariest question of them all. Feedback from your employees is not always easy to hear. However, if you expect them to take constructive criticism and grow, you need to model it yourself.
You want to know what you’re doing well and where you can improve. This helps you apply direct action toward bettering yourself, which betters your employees and your entire office.
This might be the hardest Question of the Day for Work to ask but also the most important. First, it tells you what needs to change (especially if you hear it from multiple people). Next, it creates a culture of asking for and accepting feedback. When everyone feels comfortable growing, growth is inevitable.
It’s hard to find the time each day to check in with every person under your direction. Asking and getting the answers to each of these questions of the day in a workplace seems like a job in itself.
Choose an avenue that works best for you. One-on-one communication is great, and in-person is even better. However, if you need to do this over direct message, the phone, or video chat, that works, too! Leaving notes for each other in a running journal is also a possibility. mAt the end of the day, your employees want your opinion and feedback. Your Question of the Day for Work help guide them to improving and achieving their best level of success.