When I’m working with a new client, like when I’m setting up a speaking or coaching gig, I always ask a lot of questions. How can I help you succeed? How can I make your life easier? What do your members expect from my presentation? My goal here is simple. First, I want to know what they’re looking for in a speaker to ensure that we’re a good fit. If we’re not, that’s okay. There are others speakers out there who can likely better give them what they want. But if we are a good fit, well, that’s where the magic happens. That’s where we both walk away thoroughly satisfied by working together in unison.
Second, even though I have reasons for giving the speeches I do, a passion behind each of them, sharing them isn’t about hitting my agenda. It’s about theirs. It’s about helping them meet their objectives and goals, and I’m not going to know what any of those are if I never ask.
That’s why I created Red’s 12-Step Program Designed to Help You Improve Any (And Every) Area of Your Life. If you’ve taken part in this program, then you already know that it is loaded with questions. There are questions in the readings and in the worksheets and each one is designed to help you better understand yourself and others so you can achieve the things you want to achieve in life.
By being introspective and understanding your own why’s—why things are important to you and why you feel the way you do—you’re more equipped to handle the obstacles that you throw in your own path. You’re able to push yourself past whatever threatens to hold you back because you better understand both what is happening and your response to it. You can then use this information to make the best decisions possible, decisions that can take you wherever it is you want.
Being more understanding of other people by asking them questions benefits you as well. At a minimum, it gives you an idea of what they’ve been through in the past and how this may impact their decisions today. Best case scenario, it tells you what you can do to better meet their needs, making working together a win-win for both of you.
What types of questions can you ask to get the necessary response?
When speaking to yourself, it helps to ask why. Why do I feel this way? Why do I want this so bad? Why is this important to me? Keep asking yourself why until you get to a bare bones answer. This is where your motivation lies, which is critical to knowing because it’s this type of information that will help you push yourself long after you want to quit.
When speaking to others, it’s helpful to ask why questions as well. Why is this important to you? Why are you seeking assistance with this problem? Why do you want to take this route?
Other non-why questions are important too. For instance, it may be helpful to question: What are your expectations? What do you hope to achieve by working together or being in this relationship? What do you need from me to make this a win-win?
All of these questions can help you reach new heights, both personally and professionally. Now all you have to do is get out there (or go inside) and ask those questions. What are you waiting for?