Give me a number between 1 and 10

Please add your comments at the bottom… many thanks.
Time to Read: 2 mins 51 secs
Time to Listen : 2:26

 

Yes, I know I ask you to think about this, rather a lot…

That personal dream you have – that ambition, target, aim, whatever you call it – what do you think, today, right now, as you read this, are the chances that you can actually achieve it?

Out of 10

1 being no chance

10 being it is a racing certainty

Give me a number, between 1 and 10

OK, got it?

Now, let me ask you a question, whatever number you chose

Why didn’t you give me a lower number?

Go on, why did not you not say a lower number?

A brilliant coaching question you can use in any area of your life, to really help others

When you ask the “give me a number” question of someone, and they respond, they expect you to ask:

“Why didn’t you give me a higher number?”

In other words – where are your ambitions, why don’t you think more of yourself, etc. etc?

Instead:

Why didn’t you give me a lower number?

Changes their state (it is a surprise), AND gets them to focus on what they can do, not what they can’t, and gets them to take ownership.

All with a switch of one word.

Help others – and enjoy

With my love and best wishes

David
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10 Comments

  • Claire Silvester

    Love that question ….I used number ratings in coaching alot with some engineering based clients as its helps them to focus.

    This will add perfectly to this set of questions.

    My Favourite coaching questions is the magic wand question ….

    .. as a follow on, having started the topic.. use “and if you had a magic wand… ” .pause normally the client will finish the sentence with some helpful insights on the art of the possible, if a prompt is required use ” what could it do for you…..”

    everyone loves it …. works with your kids as well.

  • jackiewitney

    I love the magic wand Claire 🙂
    When people don’t know what they want and you say…. if you did know want you want what would it be? I find works really well

  • Dan Jones

    I automatically say 10.

  • Thomas Frith

    It’s normal to go low…that way you are not setting the bar too high in terms of expectations.

  • Sally Hill

    Aim high, then achieve more, it’s the best way to succeed.
    Aim for mid-range, then you will fall below expectations.

  • Anita Raymond

    I use a magic wand too and it works for me…great line.

  • Liam Roake

    I love that give me a number between one and 10 line, that mathematical one where it gives you your date of birth. So clever.
    As for numbers relating to achievement.
    I think most people have low expectations of whet it is they can actually achieve.
    They don’t seem to have that drive and inner belief which tells them they can get out of life that something extra that they don’t seem to think they can. Hence the low number.
    Aiming high sometimes puts too much pressure on. They only ‘think’ they can do it so a low number means there is little expectation.
    Those who give a big number are the serious players, they ‘will’ do it and make sure they do.

  • David Taylor

    So, what do you say if someone says 8-10 – ask the same question – our challenge comes if someone says 0-2. In several years of doing this, I have never had that. In my opinion if they say 2 ask the same question, if its a 1 ask “why didn’t you say 0?” and if they say “0” I would ask “so, is this something you really want?”David

  • Michael Sumner

    Exactly, David, anything below 5, i would question whether they really want that badly enough.
    As you say, they might just as well as go for 0.

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