By Dan Byl
Ever get frustrated by the answers you receive when asking questions? Ever feel like you have to lead the conversation, or draw everything, something, anything out of the person you are sitting across from?
It might not be them, it might be the questions you are asking. There are two types of questions that we can ask, powerful questions and not so powerful questions. So what is the difference?
A powerful question will open doors that you didn’t even know were there, it will send you on a quest. A powerful question will lead the a person into new territory, will expand your way of thinking, they usually evoke an emotion, or a response. And 95% of the time they are not yes or no questions, for instance the opening questions to this post were not powerful questions.
If I was to ask those questions in a powerful way they could look something like. “What bothers you about asking questions?” or “what are the most frustrating answers you receive when asking questions?” these questions allow and create opportunities for more exploration. They invite the person to join the conversation, not simply answer the question. They create dialogue.
To often we find our selves running down a check list, trying to acquire information as quickly as possible, rather then creating relationship. And when we get to the end of the list, we don’t really know the person, and they defiantly don’t feel heard. Asking powerful questions is one of the most powerful tools that you can acquire. This tool when used properly will create sales, and open doors, it will make friends, and create opportunities.
Here is a list of some of my go to powerful questions.
- If you had your choice, what would you do?
- What is important about that for you?
- What are possible solutions?
- How does this fit with your plans/way of life/values?
- What if it doesn’t work out the way you wish?
- If you could do it over again, what would you do differently?
- If it were you, what would you have done?
- What will you have to do to get the job done?
- What kind of picture do you have right now?
- How would you pull all this together?
- What do you want?
- How will you know you have received/reached it?
- How is this working? How is this going?
All of these questions lead to more conversation, and open a door rather then close one.
Dan Byl is a purpose guru and a millennial leadership specialist.
More from Dan as well as a copy of his Discover Your Purpose Ebook at DanByl.com
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