Questions = Understanding = Results

Today I had the pleasure of interviewing an expert in communications, Brenden from MasterTalk. In his opinion, one of the keys to successful communication is to ask lots of questions. Rather than constantly speaking to a person, you should ask questions and get to know them better. By understanding them better, you are better able to successfully communicate with them.

When you show interest in a person, they tend to respond in a positive manner, whereas when you just speak at a person, they can easily become offended or disinterested.

During the interview, his message reminded me of an interview with a negotiation specialist Christine McKay. In that interview she described how one of the key problems in negotiation is a lack of questions. People too often go to an adversarial position and then it becomes a battle of wills.

Having been the lead negotiator working with nearly half of the Fortune 500 companies, Christine has had a lot of experience. Here approach is not to adopt a confrontational position, but rather, to ask questions and understand the other party’s point of view and what they are trying to achieve. By both parties having a better understanding of one another, in her opinion they are much more likely to come to an amicable and mutually beneficial agreement.

A true “win/win” can be achieved if both parties ask questions of one another and demonstrate a willingness to listen and take on board their respective points of view.

When it comes to being successful in your business niche, what is one of the keys? Understanding your customer’s journey. The more we understand about our potential customer and their journey, the more likely we are to succeed. We can translate that knowledge into success by crafting our approach to suit them.

We can gather information on our potential customers in a variety of ways, one of which being to ask them questions.

Asking questions is the mechanism, but forming a deeper understanding is the objective. Whether you are negotiating, wanting to communicate or trying to sell to someone, the more effort you put into first understanding the other person, the more likely you are to achieve a successful outcome.

If we take the time to understand, we are more likely to achieve the optimum outcome.

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