Prompt Engineering: The New Frontier In AI And Leadership Communication

At dinner the other night, we listened to a millennial explain how he used Chat GPT to plan a holiday, including sights to see, places to stay and where to eat. As he went through his examples of fine-tuning his questions when he wanted cheaper hotel options or restaurants with no waiting, it was clear the quality of his questions was crucial. No doubt you have discovered this for yourself. In fact, prompt engineering is an emerging field that focuses on crafting precise and effective prompts to maximise the capabilities of AI like Chat GPT. Companies recognise the need for people who can communicate with AI to streamline processes and improve outcomes.

It seems to me we need to include prompt engineering principles into our questions when dealing with team members, whether in person or virtually. Asking the right questions is a critical skill for leaders that can enhance our personal and professional interactions, drive better decision-making, and foster more meaningful connections. Instead of asking, ‘How’s the project going?’ a more insightful question might be, ‘What challenges are you facing with the project, and how can I support you?’

Some of the best leaders I have encountered have a refreshing curiosity and the ability to simplify complexity with profound questions.

Bobb Biehl, in his booklet, Asking Profound Questions, writes: ‘There is a gigantic difference between the person who has no questions to help him/her process situations and the person who has profound questions available. If you ask profound questions, you get profound answers; if you ask shallow questions, you get shallow answers; and if you ask no questions, you get no answers at all. Without good questions, you are left in the position of making unwise decisions because you haven’t thought things through for yourself.’

Asking profound questions isn’t just a valuable skill, it’s an art we can all learn through practice. The effort we put into crafting our questions will pay off in unlocking greater potential, foster more meaningful connections, and drive better outcomes.

🙋 What’s a profound question you could ask? 🙋‍♀️

Best regards, Brian