People will always answer your questions even if they say absolutely nothing.
So, when you are faced with a tricky situation, a tricky meeting of some kind, always make sure you have assembled a number of smart questions beforehand!
Most people prefer to have a set of rules for most of the things that they do.
This makes any task far easier.
Men in particular, are prone to this process.
So, is there a set of rules you can follow when you need to ask questions, sensitive, tricky questions?
And the key is to plan ahead.
Now let’s say you have an appointment with somebody, a situation which may be complicated, and you want to get them to a specific outcome.
Well, think through the likely responses you will receive and chain your questions so that you can roam from chain to chain depending upon the answer, the response that you receive.
The way you word a question is absolutely vital.
You want to make sure you frame a question to get the answer that you want.
There is a pattern, beautifully named, called a “conversational postulate” which virtually guarantees, elicits a “yes” response almost every time.
“Wouldn’t it be fantastic to have a really good belly laugh, every single day?”
Now, it’s so important to build rapport, to ask questions a person can comfortably answer.
If they have difficulty, it can immediately break rapport.
So, you need to make sure your questions are worded very carefully, with absolute care.
People enjoy answering questions because it makes them feel good sharing their knowledge and their opinions.
It strengthens rapport and advances the conversation.
The communication just flows and they feel valued.
And it can be further amplified if you nod your head, and use positive body language all the time during a conversation.
Leading questions are particularly powerful because they tend to install the right answer in someone’s mind.
Using leading questions is deceptively simple, it is quite simple.
Just think of a statement that you wish to make, and turn it into a question.
“Leading questions are really useful.”
Now add a phrase such as “aren’t they” at the end of the question and this turns the statement into a question.
“Leading questions are really useful, aren’t they?”
Always keep in mind the value of emotion.
At the end of the day we all want to be happy, healthy, and successful.
This desire can be used when you frame your questions.
“Can you imagine how you will feel, and how you will be received when you double your sales?”
Sometimes you may need to be specific to achieve an outcome, so think in terms of dollars, cents, times, actions, and so on, if you need to.
Consider what could go wrong, and cover the objections that you might get.
As a precursor to a challenging meeting just think through how you want to feel and how the other person should feel.
In short, be prepared!
Another way to produce the outcome you want is to encourage a person by redirecting their thinking.
This causes their mind to be directed towards what you are seeking.
“I’m curious to know how you will feel when you have the benefits of this change at your disposal?”
You can future pace a person by painting a picture of what life may be like if they fail to take action.
Nobody enjoys the idea of future pain, so it’s likely they will want to avoid it if possible.
Then you can just then magically mention that this has not yet happened and, of course, if they follow your suggestion it is highly likely never to happen!
Once they understand and imagine the ramifications of the choice they are about to make, it is highly likely, in all probability, they will choose you!
The important point to be aware of is that everything depends upon the way a question is asked.
Mastering the timing using the right tonality is absolutely essential.
Just keep in mind that asking the right questions and being well prepared, with a chain of questions, builds incredibly strong rapport and leads to the outcome that you want.