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Socrates on Sneakers – Ask better Questions, get better Answers


Socrates on Sneakers – Ask better Questions, get better Answers

Do you ever feel you want to ask a question but somehow you don’t? Do you sometimes get the feeling there is a ‘question behind the question’ but you just don’t know how to get there?

In this workshop, you will find out some of the reasons that prevent us from asking the right question at the right time, and you will learn how to improve your art of questioning.

We will take a look at one of the biggest superheroes when it comes to asking questions and critical thinking: Socrates.

After this training you:

  • ✔ Are aware of the most common pitfalls and mistakes in questioning, and you know how to avoid them
  • ✔ Will listen more clearly and critically
  • ✔ Will be able to formulate questions that are clear, precise and straight to the point
  • ✔ Know why using arguments to convince someone will never work – and what to do instead
  • ✔ Will know when and how to ask Socratic questions that lead to depth and sharpness in a conversation
Book by Elke Wiss: Socrates on Sneakers

Outline of this training

During this training the following topics are covered:

  • Why are you here?
    • Formulating a clear question is not as easy as it seems
  • Why are we generally quite bad at asking good questions?
    • 6 reasons you are not asking good questions at the right moments
    • Conversation reflexes that prevent us from listening and asking questions
  • How to ask sharp and precise questions
    • Why we don’t listen and miss crucial information
    • How to practice listening differently
    • Slowing down in a conversation to stop your dopamine-factory
  • Socratic skills to improve your conversations immediately
    • Socratic listening and the art of shutting up
    • Slowing down in a conversation to save yourself from the bad reflexes
    • Finding the question behind the question by identifying presuppositions
  • Reflection, questions and wrap up


  • Elke Wiss

  • De Denksmederij

Elke Wiss (1986) is a theatre maker, practical philosopher, trainer and speaker. In 2009 she graduated from the Theater Academy in Maastricht as a director and theatre teacher. Since then she has given training courses, workshops and lessons in performance techniques, text handling and direction, and makes performances with theatre and singing groups. As a speaker director, she trains people to speak and present better.

Elke is the founder of De Denksmederij, an office for practical philosophy and creative thinking. As a practical philosopher, she conducts mental discussions, individually and in groups. She provides training, lectures and workshops in critical thinking, creativity and the art of asking questions, together with a team of creative and critical think trainers and Socratic moderators.

Her book ‘Socrates on sneakers’ (English: ‘How to know everything’) was published in March 2020; a philosophical guide to asking good questions. That book became an instant bestseller; in the first 3 months, more than 10.000 books were sold, making it a bestseller. More than 50.000 copies have now been sold in the Dutch language alone, the book entered high in the Bestseller top 60, reached the Top 10 non-fiction and even landed at number 1 in the Management Book Top 100. ‘Socrates on sneakers‘ is translated into English, German and Korean.


At De Denksmederij we offer workshops, masterclasses and keynotes on critical thinking, the art of questioning and creative thinking.

Today’s world is bursting with people-with-opinions. There is little room for nuance, for real thinking and research together. It’s ‘you against me’ rather than ‘us against the problem’. We want to convince the other that we are right rather than wiser together.

Today’s world requires critical and creative thinkers; people who think outside the box, are willing to research, experiment and ask questions. People who understand that you have to test, substantiate and question answers. People who do not cling to supposedly knowing for sure, but dare to take on ‘not-knowing’. People who don’t get stuck in their own ideas and opinions, but also want to explore the other’s.

De Denksmederij guides individuals and organizations in better, clearer, more constructive, more creative and more fruitful thinking. In group discussions, philosophical walks, Socratic dinners, or individual consultations. Sharp questions, an inquisitive attitude and in-depth conversations. Exactly what today’s world needs.

Practical information

  • Class in English
  • Online course (runtime 3 hours)
  • Price €245,- (per participant, ex VAT)
  • Course uses Zoom (no account is required)
  • Group size 8-12 participants

Interested in this training, please fill out the form 👉

Practical info

  • 8-12 participants
  • via Zoom
  • 💬 Improve your conversations immediately
  • Interested in this training? 👇