I think many of us see the value in good discussions, but are often frustrated on how to get there.
Equally frustrating is when you expect a learning time to be discussion-oriented, but instead there's just one person waxing eloquent on the subject at hand. Sometimes this happens because they don't know any better. Other times they truly want to lead a discussion but don't know how. Either way, help is here.
Pheaney's Discussion Starting 101
- Ask questions. Brilliant I know.
- Ask good questions.
- Can you answer the question with a Yes or No? You need a new question.
- Is it a rhetorical question? You need a new question. (There's nothing wrong with a good rhetorical question in public speaking, but they just don't work in a discussion time.)
- Wait for an answer. Really wait.
- You might not be giving everyone enough time to formulate a response.
- Or you might always answer your own questions, which just conditions people to not answer your questions. (Why should they? You're going to answer them anyway!)
- Rephrase your question if needed.
- Just wait longer.
- Allow others to ask questions. And then engage them in those questions. You want an atmosphere where everyone feels comfortable asking anything.
I'll add to this if I think of anything else. Do you have anything to add?