The power of questions

“A gossip is one who talks to you about others…a bore one who talks to you about himself…and a brilliant conversationalist is one who talks to you about yourself.”

- Lisa Kirk, Actress and Singer

These past few months, I’ve been leading a lot of Executive Presence workshops. If you read my past blogs, you know I like to keep things simple. A key foundational principle in developing executive presence is simply, “The focus is on them, not me.”

The top leaders in Asia have the ability to leverage the power of questions. This is one of the key factors to their success.  An effective questioning technique allows them to meet anyone for the first time, develop win-win relationships, influence people into following them, etc.

Why are questions so powerful?

  • People love to talk about their favorite topic, themselves.
  • The person who asks the questions, gets the information. The person talking is giving information… so ask questions.
  • The person asking the questions controls the conversation. It is common courtesy to answer a reasonable question. Listen to their answers in order to follow up with the next question. Direct the conversation gently to the topic you want to discuss by asking transition questions.

To get people to talk, it’s as easy as asking them questions about their favorite topic, themselves. Develop a habit of using questions, focusing not on you, but on them.