Fish and game experts determined the answer to the woodchuck riddle in the 1930’s….“How much wood could a woodchuck chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood?” If chuck means chew, the answer is about 700 pounds a day. Not bad for the woodchuck, also called a groundhog and famous as a predictor of springtime arrival. (Thank you Punxsutawney Phil!)
You might wonder what this critter has to do with mentoring and the answer to that riddle is not much.
But questioning the riddle has a lot to do with mentoring, and both Mentors and Mentees benefit from great questions. Curiosity and the desire to reach and grow are connected.
So Mentor questions might be from acute listening, like “what DIDN’T you say here?” Or “why do I now hear uncertainty about this?” Or “why did you just pull back on that?”
And Mentee questions might be some of these: “Would you evaluate this after I try it?” Or “What was your experience about this?” Or, “What helped you get over a hurdle such as this?” Or “How often can I call you about this?”
These are the 700 pound questions!