Powerful Questioning


“The art of conversation lies in listening.” Malcolm Forbes

The art of powerful questioning lies in listening. Listening with intention, curiosity and a posture of not knowing enables us to be fully present. Questions will come organically.

This class is designed to delve deeply into the art of Powerful Questioning and build on the student’s existing knowledge and experience. The topics covered will include:

  • Purpose and intent of Powerful Questioning
  • How different modalities use questioning including Traditional, Appreciative Inquiry, Character Strengths, Solution Focused Brief Coaching, Clean Language, Neuroscience Based Coaching, Reflective Inquiry

The framework will include teacher presentations, coaching demos, in class exercises, homework assignments, and class discussions.


  1. Participation in Class Discussion and exercises: Contribute actively to the class discussion during the 8 weeks – speak up at least once during each class and volunteer to be coach or client when opportunities arise
  2. Homework: Weekly assignments

Preparation for Class 1

  1. Read and become familiar with the ICF updated Core Competency related to Powerful Questioning. There is a handout in the class library addressing this.
  2. Come to class prepared to introduce yourself and share your best hopes for the class.


Class 1:

  • Welcome
  • Introductions
  • Purpose of Powerful Questioning
  • The power of listening
  • Establishing the Coaching Agreement
  • Beginning with the end in mind
  • Coaching the person not the problem

Class 2:

  • Introduction to Appreciative Inquiry Coaching and Character Strengths
  • Strength Spotting Exercise

Class 3:

  • Introduction to Solution Focused Brief Coaching
  • The Miracle Question
  • Scaling
  • Coaching Demo

Class 4:

Coaching Practicum 1
In this class students will participate in coaching exercises which will give them the opportunity to apply coaching skills.

Class 5:

DOQ – A Listening Model

DOQ is a listening model that invites a broader perspective for curating the coaching conversation.

Class 6:

  • Introduction to Clean Language
  • Metaphors
  • Coaching Demo

Class 7:

  • Neuroscience Based Coaching
  • A coaching tool for calibrating between stress and boredom
  • Coaching demo

Class 8:

Coaching Practicum 2
In this class students will once again participate in coaching exercises that will give them additional opportunities to apply coaching skills.

Course Prerequisites

Some coach training


Loved the course! What a privilege to meet Lillian and be taught by her!

- C.H.

The instructor is a lovely, warm and caring person who loves coaching, believes in what she is doing and is very efficient at doing it. I really enjoyed this class.

- M.A.

It was a pleasure to learn in such a safe, kind environment. Thank you for facilitating such an open and warm space for learning!

- F.C.

Thank you so much for the joy, techniques, and all of the "what's" that you taught me during the PQ class. I learned a great deal and appreciate your teaching style

- L.W.

I have found this class to be particularly informative and useful in the sense that I am able to immediately start using these new “tools” in my day to day work. I appreciate that.

- J.B.