Ask intelligent questions

Ask intelligent questions,” the immediate supervisor told us one time as we prepared for the next day’s meeting.

But how do you exactly ask intelligent questions?

Come to the meeting prepared.

What does that look like? Before the meeting, you should go over the material or topic and look into areas you want to further understand. I want to emphasize the phrase ‘understand further.’ I think this is what makes a question an intelligent one. You ask questions because you want to know more about something that is not explicitly discussed or explained in the material. And you think that the speaker would be someone who could give you valuable insights, so you raise them.

You can say that intelligent questions are the ones that can spur the imagination. In no way do I encourage trivial questions used to incite emotions (the good and the bad). Rather, intelligent questions are the ones that compel the person to learn more and grow.

For the past 19 years, I’ve been in academia walls, from kindergarten to graduate studies, I mostly go to school unprepared by which the reasons have evolved over time. Being unprepared means that I never looked into the material before the class begins. Instead of making the most of the time with the teachers by asking them intelligent questions, I spend the whole time digesting the lessons. When a question finally came to mind, the class has already moved on to another lesson. And the cycle repeats its course.

Maybe this is your story too.

The good news is, you can do something about it. The mere fact that you can read this blog post means that you have access to the internet. And your access to the internet allows you to learn a lot of stuff if you just learn to look.

However, I acknowledge that some people have more access to learning than others. But for those who do, make the most of it. Take charge of your learning. If you are tempted to make excuses, here’s a blog post I wrote about blaming somebody on the things you have control over with.

I hope this resonates, and the next time you have a chance to do so, ask intelligent questions.

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on

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