What question

What are the next steps? Do I get to be involved?

These are two questions, or is it actually one? We could ask what is our real intention.

If we are genuinely curious about the next steps, then we should just stop at the first question.
If we want to know if we need to allocate time because of our involvement, then we should just go with the second one.
If we want to be involved, then we should just say it and avoid the question.

Can I ask if you have made the decision already?

This is one question, but it turns out we are asking two. Out of excessive politeness, most definitely.

If we want to know if the person is free to answer, then we should just stop at the first question.
If we want to know whether a decision has been made, then we should just go with the second one.
If we want to know the decision that was made, then we should just go ahead and ask directly.

Communication is complex, so much so that it often fails. Why add complexity?

Ask yourself what you want to know, then make the question that can get you the answer.

4 thoughts on “What question

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