Our inquisitive minds



We think of inquisitive as a state of mind, not something to try every now and then.

Our success at work and home relies heavily on being able to discover issues, uncover needs, find out more than others, find out what is not in the brief or uncover the driving factors behind the need for change.

One of the keys to influencing people is attunement (or being at one with another person) The way to do this is by a deeper understanding of them and their situation. You can start with putting yourself in the other persons shoes but the key is to ask them better questions.

Think of a time when you finished meeting or catch up with some one and you walk away thinking "that guy doesn't know the first thing about me"

That would be the opposite of attunement and it would be because that person didn't ask the right questions and didn't listen properly.

The key to success across influencing people or solving issues is ASKING BETTER QUESTIONS

"Asking the right questions is more important than having the right answers" Robert Cialdini (if you haven't read any of his stuff on influencing it's worth a read).

One of the keys to asking better questions is to actively listen.

Listening without listening for anything is a key to this. Stop listening for the key to tell that person what you think and start listening for to what they are saying and why. A technique to improve your listening skills and make the person you are speaking to feel (and know) you are listening to them is to pause after they finish speaking. Test your self for an hour one day, every person you speak to pause for 5 seconds after they finish to consider what they have said, not just wait to tell them what you think. Build up to a few hours and see how you go, its hard. You will become acutely aware of people talking over the top of you or not listening. It can be confronting to stand in the hall of mirrors and reflect on your own habits.

There is a great site www.rightquestion.org

There is a lot of stuff on the site if you are inquisitive.

So there are three things you can do before meeting new humans in any situation, clients, out and about anything.

  • Write a brain dump of questions you could ask to find out more about that person, that could spark their imagination, that could lead to a deeper understanding of them as a person as opposed to just their current situation
  • Short list those questions down to open ended questions (stuff that requires more than a one word response usually
  • Short list those down to predominantly unique questions by improving them.
  • Reduce it to 5 maximum powerful questions and assess how you would respond to them if asked so you know the feelings associated with them.
  • Keep those 5 questions top of mind and re read them before you head into situations work or social.

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