England & Wales, Global, Ireland, Scotland

Online Training: Questioning Skills for Scrutiny


This programme has been developed for Councillors who want to develop their questioning skills, particularly relating to scrutiny.

The session includes:

  • Awareness of the different types of questions
  • Avoiding poor practice questions
  • Probing skills
  • Voice and tonality
  • Active listening skills.

Each delegate will receive a comprehensive handout. 


10 mins Welcome

Programme objectives

Personal introductions

25 mins An Introduction to Question Types

Different types of questions

Poor practice v good practice questions

Avoiding common mistakes in questioning

25 mins Scrutiny Activity

Review and discussion

25 mins Interpersonal Skills

Voice and tonality

Non-verbal behaviour

Active listening skills

5 mins Session Review

Summary, key learning points, feedback and close.


Who should attend?

Elected members who want to develop and improve their questioning skills for Scrutiny Committees.


Miranda Smythe

Miranda has 30 years’ experience in helping organisations (mainly local government) to identify learning gaps, and to develop tailored, creative and relevant strategies for meeting these needs with a view of helping them meet their objectives.  Miranda is also a Local Government Information Unit (LGIU) Associate Trainer and has been involved in developing bespoke programmes for Councillors including speed reading and personal safety.

In addition to her formal role, Miranda is also very involved in local community development activities, providing mental health awareness sessions for many not-for-profit organisations.  She is Chair of a local homelessness charity and has been instrumental in developing and facilitating community leadership initiatives in Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire.