If you spend time with kids, you’ll know a lot about questions – “but whyyy?” Sound familiar? It’s by asking questions that we learn about the world. Questions allow us to have conversations, form relationships and solve problems.
At Memwah, we use the art of questioning to make storytelling easy. We provide questions for you or your loved one to answer, but we also encourage you to ask your own! Great questions elicit great responses.
Ask open-ended questions
Group questions in categories
Categories give you an opportunity to ask multiple questions about the same topic. They also give your storyteller time to warm up and recall more information.
Use the funnelling technique
The funnelling technique gives you the opportunity to learn more about your storyteller by getting down to details. These questions often reveal parts of their personality you may have not been aware of before.
Ask about the information you already know
Think of all the things that make your relative or friend tick. Perhaps they eat at the same restaurant every month, or they only wear the colour blue. There’s usually a story behind their interests or quirks. It’s your job to unlock them.
Example: “You always used to play that one particular song in the car. What does that song mean to you?”
Elevate your questions
In Harvard Business Review, Tom Pohlmann and Neethi Mary Thomas write, “Elevating questions raise broader issues and highlight the bigger picture. They help you zoom out.”
Elevated questions encourage your storyteller to view the world from a different perspective. This not only gives your audience a better insight into your loved one’s personality, but it colours their story with cultural and historical context.
Example: “How have views on the environment changed since you were young?”