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The true power of a question


We all seek answers in life whether it’s for direction, gratification, satisfaction, compensation or any other matter. Regardless of the reason there is always one thing in common as it always begins with a question. So why do we not put more importance into the question that leads to the answer. In other words…Why do we ask dumb questions expecting intelligent and positive answers?


I just read a great book by Marilee Adams; Change your Questions, Change your Life: 10 Powerful Tools for Life and Work. In it she explains how questions are at the core of how we listen, behave, think and relate; how virtually everything we think and do is generated by questions. Ms. Adams leads us into a new path called "Question Thinking" that is innovative, productive and rewarding. After completing this book, I notice a dramatic change in how I looked upon others, how I worded my questions and how I developed positive results for my clients, contracts and more so myself personally.


Now we all can say that is fine and well, but I personally know how to ask a question to get the desired result... THE ANSWER. Maybe so, but what we are not realizing is that we might be alienating the person that we are seeking the answer from without even knowing it. Further we might not be getting the correct or full information we seek for reasons of that alienation. With each and every question we are driving down a path to the desired destination, the answer.


It’s the simple equation of life. The more questions, the greater chance of getting to the right answer.


Now let's change this up for a second... What if we were to ask nothing but positive questions and lots of them. Think about that for minute. Would the answers change? Would the results be different? Let's take an example of a team going out to secure a new client and everyone is responsible for a small portion of the deal. After two weeks of trying to close the contract the Team Leader is informed that they didn't get the deal. Now the Team Leader can choose two tactics of response to seek out the answers to why the team didn't close. The negative... "Who is responsible?" or the positive "How can we bring in a positive result next time? Both get to the same required answer, yet the latter is a positive more engaging action. It would encourage the team to contribute more constructive thoughts.


What if we apply this to the customer? How about asking questions and lots of them? What does that say about us? Are we interested? Are we exacting? Are we professional? Are we seeking more information to make quantified and qualified decisions? Yes... Is the answer to all of those questions. What happens in this relationship? Are you a peddler trying to push a decision or are you now the trusted adviser there to assist in the decision-making process? The latter is more likely the case, and if so, you are going to have a more satisfied client and a great source of referrals. What does that mean to you? A happier existence in your environment and greater income.


So as your parents said.... Think before you ask the question as a positive question is going to bring a greater result.



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