The Art of Effective
How you ask questions is very important in
establishing a basis for
Effective questions open the door to knowledge and understanding.
The art of
questioning lies in knowing which questions to ask and when. Address your first
question to yourself: what would you search for if you had a magic e-book
that had the right answers to any question? The answer will
help you compose the right questions.
"A prudent question
is one half of
specific question if
you want to hear a specific answer. Open – as opposed to leading – questions
are those that cannot be answered with a straight "yes" or "no". Use open
questions to gain insight into the other person's character, and to invite
To profit from experience you must be open and
learn, even from
what some people might consider a
What may seem to be a failure can actually
lead to new opportunities. Effective
learning questions can serve as a starting point for the assimilation of
Being the core component of the
ask / tell repertoire, coaching questions
are "to prompt the learners into exploring issues in depth either by direct
questions or by implied questions – even a raised eyebrow – so that they
become more aware of what is going on and can eventually
Feedback can then be used to discuss
progress and provide guidance, but still by using questions and the main
vehicle for progress whenever possible."4 ... More
Pretending Ignorance: Smart Is
Socrates used this technique more than 2300 years ago. He pretended
ignorance in order to encourage others to express their views fully.
Today, many world's smartest and fastest businesspeople have perfected this art
consciously or unconsciously – of paying dumb.
"People who try to impress by
pretending to be smart generally aren't. Truly smart people know that by playing
dumb and asking the other party to repeat or explain things several times,
asking lots of questions, they'll be better prepared to respond and then make a
Question Based Selling
asking the right question is just as important as knowing what to say.
Salespeople must know how to ask the right questions at the right time to
clients and customers in order to identify new opportunities, qualify
accounts and uncover needs. This is the principle behind Question
Based Selling (QBS)...
Is Problem Solving
Business Communication: The
To build relationships and
network with people effectively, the only thing you need to do is to
ask them all about their business and what they do. What questions should you be asking to
create the right situation for perfecting it?...
Searching questions can help you
discover new opportunities,
uncover the roots of a problem, and
find creative solutions
Asking searching questions starts with challenging assumptions. If you do
not check assumptions you cannot be good at asking searching questions.
Don't ask one or two questions and then rush straight towards a solution.
With an incomplete understanding of the problem it is very easy to jump to
Ask open-ended questions that elicit a wide rage of answers:
Case in Point
"It is really dangerous if everyone in a
company starts thinking the same way", says
Founder of the Dell Computer Corporation. "The danger comes when you fall
into the trap of approaching problems too similarly. You can encourage your
people to think about your business, your industry, your customers
Ask a different question – or word the same question in a different way. By
approaching a problem, a response or an opportunity
a different perspective, you create an opportunity for new understanding
and new learning. By
questioning all the aspects of our business, we continuously inject
innovation into our
Case in Point
Lessons from Jack Welch
the legendary former CEO of General Electric,
is all about knowing what questions to ask of his subordinates. That's all
managing is, says he: just coming up with the right questions and getting
the right answers.
To understand the strategic issues within each
of GE businesses and to see where these
were going Welch asked the five questions...