Four Terrifying Questions

I don’t know exactly where these questions originated. I read them on a friend’s blog a number of years ago and adopted them for my own use rather immediately.

Asking these questions is not for the faint of heart. The answers can be quite scary. But they can also be uplifting and challenging in a great way. They will absolutely help you to further lean into your strengths as well as identify some blind spots.

I use these questions most often after I’ve completed a major project. I’ll circle back with the people I worked with most closely and ask them to answer these four questions specifically in regard to me and our shared project.

I’ve also used them as a personal year end review. I’ll ask the questions of those I am closest to and whom I most trust to give feedback in an honest and kind way.

A few best practices and words of warning from my experience using these questions:

Send the questions out in writing, but accept the answers in any format.

Do not allow anonymous responses. Truth and honesty erode quickly with the allowance of anonymity. Therefore, anonymous responses are rarely helpful and should not be read or heard. Make this clear, and give an easy system for your people to make themselves known.

They should answer all the questions completely. No picking and choosing which questions to answer. Improvements can not be made if the truth is not looked at from all sides.

And now, the four questions.

What am I currently doing that you feel I do well and should continue doing?

What am I currently doing that you feel I don’t do well and should stop doing?

What am I not currently doing that you feel I could do well?

Have I said or done anything to you that has hurt you or in any way hindered the potential of our relationship?

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