Asking Powerful Questions to Improve Your Wellness Program

Posted by Becky Squiers on Thu, Sep, 10, 2015

Getting feedback about your wellness program is a must. But did you know that the questions you ask play a huge role in the quality of the feedback you get?

Powerful Questions for WellnessEven if you’re taking everything your employees say and adjusting your program accordingly, you might not be building the best program for your company. When you seek feedback about your employee wellness program, you need to ask powerful questions to get the best information.

Powerful questions help to broaden the feedback you get. These questions encourage your employees to think outside the box and open up their minds. That means your mind will be opened up when it comes to the wellness activities you decide to plan.

Asking powerful questions can also help you address problems more efficiently. You’ll get to the root of the problem more quickly without wasting time and resources on the wrong questions.

So what makes a question powerful? There are three dimensions that need to be addressed in the architecture of the question.

Dimension #1, Construction

The basic layout of your questions can drastically open or narrow your employees’ minds. It’s best to ask open-ended questions rather than yes/no or either/or questions. An open-ended question will make your employees think about all the possible answers.

Similarly, the words you use can evoke a variety of responses. Words like why, how and what tend to draw out deeper and more complex answers, making the question more powerful. Words like which, who and where will likely weaken the question because they narrow the pool of answers.

Dimension #2, Scope

The scope of the question can be equally as important. Be sure to clarify whether you’re asking how something affects an individual, a department, the entire company or even the industry.

When it comes to questions about your employee wellness program, the scope might seem a bit narrow, and that’s just fine! Narrowing the scope to something realistic and relevant creates powerful questions because it draws out only the answers that make sense to your wellness program.

Dimension #3, Assumptions

While assumptions can be dangerous when asking questions, it’s important to recognize that you probably can’t ask a single question without some kind of assumption. Assumptions are simply a part of the context of the question. The best way to address these assumptions is to be aware of them and use them appropriately.

Try to take note of the assumptions you have before asking questions, and reframe questions that need it. The most powerful questions won’t lead your employees to one obvious answer, and will recognize that your assumptions might be different than those of your employees.

Powerful questions can lead you to answers you didn’t even know you were looking for. Before you seek feedback about or attempt to improve your employee wellness program, take a good look at the questions you plan to ask. If they don’t include the three dimensions of powerful questions, do some adjusting.

What kinds of questions do you ask your employees about wellness?

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Topics: Healthy Workplaces, Wellness at Work


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