Northwest Brief Therapy Training Center
Solution-Focused Management: Scaling
Scaling questions seem to be particularly useful and versatile in the consultative and supervisory context. They are simple and allow a clear focus on goals, how far along the work has come and how that progress has been achieved. Scaling can help integrate the potential differences between goals and perspectives of all parties, including the agency.
Scaling questions can be used to assess any number of things, their use is limited only by the imagination of the questioner. They can be used for assessing progress in supervision, movement towards a goal, prioritizing tasks, how realistic a goal is, even the relationship between a supervisor and a supervisee.
Scaling Questions- Individual:
“On a scale of 0 to 10, where 10 represents the attainment of your goal, and 0 represents no progress at all, where would you put yourself today?” “What tells you that things have moved to that point?” “What have you done to move it to that point, what have others done?”
“What would tell you that you had reached the next point on the scale?” “What will others notice at that point that you are at that number?”
“On the same scale, where would you say you have to be for you to say that it is good enough?” “What would you settle for on the scale: what would represent sufficient change for you and others to feel that real progress had been made and that there was no longer any need to worry?”
“If 10 represents you will ‘give it your all’ to achieve the goal, and 0 means you no longer care about what happens, where would you put yourself in terms of your commitment to the project?”
“Where would the people you are working with put you on the same scale?” If there is a disparity, ask “How do you explain that you and they see it differently?” “What do you know that they don’t know that makes you rate it the way you do?” “What makes them give the number they do?”
“What number do you think your staff would give for their commitment to achieving the goal you negotiated with them?” “What would it take for their estimate to move one point higher?”
“If things are improved one point from where they are now, what would your co-workers notice was different?” “How would they be different at that point?”
“How hopeful are you that your project can succeed?” “What tells you that number is accurate?” “What would make you more hopeful?” “What would others who know the situation say?” “What would make them more optimistic?”
“How are we doing in supervision on a 10 point scale where 10 is extremely helpful and 0 is not helpful at all?” “What can I do differently to increase that number?” “What am I doing right that allows you to give the number you do?”