Wait, What? And Life’s other Essential Questions, by James E. Ryan.
If you’ve been following me for a while, you know I’m rather obsessed by questioning! It’s an essential part of my work as a conflict management coach and conflict specialist. It’s also a fundamental life skill.
This book is an extended version of a graduation speech given by Ryan, the Dean of Harvard’s Graduate School of Education. He suggests that it’s important to spend more time thinking about the right questions to ask. He explains that effective leaders don’t have all the answers, but they know how to ask the right questions. He also argues that good questioning is equally as important in our personal lives.
The book includes five chapters dedicated to each of the five essential questions:
Couldn’t we at least…?
How can I help?
What Truly Matters?
He also includes a bonus question (and chapter) “And did you get what you wanted from this life, even so?”
It’s a short, informative and entertaining book, filled with interesting, personal and often humorous examples of how to use each of the questions and why they are so effective.