Communicate and Connect with Effective Questioning that Gets Results!



Effective Questioning that get Results!


  • How should you ask questions in order to get the results you are looking for in your network marketing business?
  • Why is how we ask questions in our business so important?
  • What is it about using effective questioning techniques that helps us connect with those we are communicating with in our business on a daily basis?
  • What's the big deal about asking questions anyway - everyone knows how to do this right?


All GREAT questions, and soon all will be revealed………however, the short answer to all these questions is this……… 




Effective Questioning is one of the key communication skills that a network marketing business owner MUST Learn, Practice and Apply with competence!







Everyone can ask questions right?


On the surface it appears that EVERYONE can ask questions - we learn this from a very young age, and it never really stops. Questioning is such an important communication skill as it is a way to:

  • Acquire information,
  • Develop new skills
  • Build relationships


However, questions can be communicated well or not so well.

Understanding the difference is paramount to your ability to communicate in your network marketing business and ultimately your overall business success.


At the end of the day you need to be using a range of communication techniques to help you connect with people and maximize all interpersonal situations you encounter in your network marketing business. Competence in effective questioning techniques will contribute to the results you are aiming for in your business.


Don't ever underestimate the power of asking powerful questions as a tool for success in all aspects of your life, but in particular, YOUR business.


So what kind of interpersonal situations in your network marketing business are likely to require you to use effective questioning techniques?

In other words, when is it necessary to communicate verbally as you build your business each day?




Four Core Key Result Areas that require Effective Questioning


There are 4 core network marketing key result areas that almost everything you do in network marketing falls into - they are:

  • Prospecting
  • Customer Service
  • Coaching
  • Leadership


Using effective questioning in your interpersonal interactions within each of these 4 key result areas will have an impact on the results you experience. Imagine the difference it could make to how you connect with people and subsequently what this could mean for the results you get in your business.


Think about it this way - if YOU are competent at asking the right questions in  each of these key result areas you will:


  • CONNNECT with your prospects so they are open to what you have to offer
  • SERVE your customers so they feel valued and continue to be open to buying your products
  • COACH your business partners to achieve competence in the skills required to build their business
  • LEAD your team of business partners so they become confident, independent and successful network marketing business owners who will be committed to their business long term.


Let's take a look at each of the Network Marketing Key Result Areas listed here and explore how effective questioning might be applied in each case.

We can do this by looking at some examples of questioning - examples that may well be familiar to you.

Then we will evaluate how they stack up in terms of whether or not they are effective questions.




EXAMPLES OF QUESTIONS IN THE 4 KEY RESULT AREAS OF NETWORK MARKETING


PROSPECTING

  • "I've been using "xyz" product for 3 months and I love it - have you heard of it?"
  • "I've just started my own home based business and I am very excited about the potential. I'd love to tell you all about it. Can I meet with you one day this week so I can show you what I'm doing?"

CUSTOMER SERVICE

  • "Hi John, just doing a quick catch up with some of my customers. Can you give me some feedback on "xyz" product?"
  • "Hi Sue, have you heard about our latest product range "abc" - it's taking everyone by storm?"

COACHING

  • "Today is our first coaching session where we discuss your competence in certain network marketing skills in order to establish your career development plan. Are there any skills you feel you are already competent in?"
  • "Since our last coaching session you have been working on practicing the skill of effective questioning - do you feel you can now ask effective questions?"

LEADERSHIP

  • "At our last team meeting we worked on your business plans. Have you all completed your draught plans?"
  • "Today at our team meeting we will be working on planning our team project - did you all bring your ideas scoped out so we can start working on this today?"


So, what do you think?

  • Are these effective questions or not so effective questions?
  • Are they the sort of questions you would use frequently in your network marketing business?
  • Just because these may be the sort of questions you use every day in your network marketing business does it make them effective?


So how could the questions listed above be phrased so they give you a more detailed response?




ASKING GREAT QUESTIONS - THE MAGIC FORMULA


When you are asking effective questions you are asking OPEN ENDED QUESTIONS!

Open ended questions are questions that allow the person you are speaking with (be that your prospect, your customer or your business partner) the opportunity to put forward their own thoughts, feelings, ideas and interpretation of the facts. Open ended questions will require the person you are speaking with to give you more than a YES or NO answer.

This helps you to gain more and better quality information from the verbal exchange and therefore facilitates a better outcome for both you and your communication partner.

So how will you know what an OPEN ENDED QUESTION actually looks like? How will you know one if it hit you in the face?


Here's the magic formula! 





Open Ended Questions will ALWAYS start with:

HOW - WHAT - WHY - WHERE - WHEN - WHO - WHICH






Now, believe me it is a little bit magic! When you start to rethink how you ask questions using open ended questions most of the time, you will be amazed at how your interpersonal communication will change dramatically. And as far as your business is concerned, well say no more………open ended questions are effective questions and they GET RESULTS!


So let's go back to the network marketing key results areas we looked at above and evaluate the questions we had under each.

  • Are they effective - in other words can they be answered with more than a YES or NO answer?
  • If not, then how could they be said differently by turning them into open ended questions?


Remember, open ended questions are effective questions because they provide the opportunity for a far more detailed and often more objective response?




EVALUATE QUESTIONS


Are the following open ended questions - YES or NO?


PROSPECTING

  • "I've been using "xyz" product for 3 months and I love it - have you heard of it?"  Not open ended
  • "I've just started my own home based business and I am very excited about the potential. I'd love to tell you all about it. Can I meet with you one day this week so I can show you what I'm doing?"  Not open ended


Let's change these questions just a little and make them open ended

  • "I've been using "xyz" product for 3 months and I love it. What "multivitamin" product do you use?"
  • "I've just started my own home based business and I am very excited about the potential - I'd love to fill you in on what I'm doing. What would be a good time for us to get together for a coffee so I can tell you all about it?"


CUSTOMER SERVICE

  • "Hi John, just doing a quick catch up with some of my customers. Can you give me some feedback on "xyz" product?"  Not open ended
  • "Hi Sue, have you heard about our latest product range "abc" - it's taking everyone by storm?"  Not open ended


Let's change these questions just a little and make them open ended

  • "Hi John, just doing a quick catch up with some of my customers. What has been your experience with "xyz" product?"
  • "Hi Sue, we've just released "abc" product range and it's taking everyone by storm - What product in this range would you be of particular interest to you?"


COACHING

  • "Today is our first coaching session where we discuss your competence in certain network marketing skills in order to establish your career development plan. Are there any skills you feel you are already competent in?"  Not open ended
  • "Since our last coaching session you have been working on practicing the skill of effective questioning - do you feel you can now ask effective questions?" Not open ended


Let's change these questions just a little and make them open ended

  • "Today is our first coaching session where we discuss your competence in certain network marketing skills in order to establish your career development plan. What skills on this plan do you feel you are already competent in?"
  • "Since our last coaching session you have been working on practicing the skill of effective questioning - How do you feel now about asking effective questions?"


LEADERSHIP

  • "At our last team meeting we worked on your business plans. Have you all completed your draught plans?"  Not open ended
  • "Today at our team meeting we will be working on planning our team project - did you all bring your ideas scoped out so we can start working on this today?" Not open ended


Let's change these questions just a little and make them open ended

  • "At our last team meeting we worked on your business plans. Where are you at now with your draught plans?"
  • "Today at our team meeting we will be working on planning our team project - what ideas have you scoped out so we can start working on this today?"




EXAMPLES OF OPEN ENDED QUESTIONS


Here are some additional examples of how to start open ended questions using theHow, What, Why, Where, When, Who or Which words.


  • "How do you feel your presentation went?"
  • "What product is of particular interest to you?"
  • "Why have you decided to run a webinar?"
  • "Where are you going to run your business presentation?"
  • "Which of these options do you prefer?"
  • "Who would you like to help you with your presentation?"
  • "When will you have your product display ready"?


As you read through these examples you will realize that none can be answered with a simple yes or no. All require a lot more detailed and thoughtful response - a response that is more than likely going to lead to ongoing communication and the opportunity for people to really connect!

Just in case you are wondering - even if you ask an open ended question you may still get a short answer.

For example: "Not bad" or "O.K." etc………

Not everyone will be inclined to explore the question and give you a more thoughtful response. At the end of the day, that's O.K. The main thing is that by using effective communication techniques such as open ended questions you have given them ample opportunity to explore things and let you know their thinking on the matter - that's all you can do! 





Remember, it's all about using effective questions that help you CONNECT with people!







POOR QUESTIONING


So if using open ended questions is an example of effective questions, what examples are there of poor or less effective questioning techniques?

Less effective questioning consists of:

  • Closed ended questions
  • Leading questions
  • Multiple questions
  • Why questions used excessively




CLOSED QUESTIONS

These questions require either a YES or NO response - avoid them unless a YES or NO response is exactly the response you want from your question.




LEADING QUESTIONS


A leading question is where the answer is included in the question.

For example:

"You didn't mean to be late did you?"

The problem with this question is that it implies the answer you expect.

Another example of a leading question is where it is perceived that only one answer will be acceptable.

For Example:

"Do you like talking to people?"

Well, if you had just started a network marketing business and someone asked you this question, I guess you'd have a pretty good idea of the kind of response they'd be expecting.

If you don't like talking to people you've got a problem! Given that network marketing is such a people business if you were asked this question I am sure your answer would be a resounding "YES" - so the response in this case has been suggested by the nature of the question itself.


Another example of a leading question often used in training situations:

"Do you understand?"

In this case you may be suggesting that you expect a "YES" response and often this is what you will get if the person you are communicating with wants to please you, maybe fears the repercussions if they say "NO" or just simply doesn't want to look like a total idiot.


Open ended questions can also be LEADING QUESTIONS.


For example:

"How do you like prospecting?"

This question implies that the person LIKE'S prospecting.

It may shock you to learn this, but a lot of people in network marketing actually strongly dislike prospecting, even though it is a key result area of their business. Mostly this is because they lack the experience and skills to do this with competence. Never-the-less, a dislike of prospecting it is not something many will admit too.

So if you asked someone in your network marketing coaching group this question chances are you are going to get a "YES" response whether they like prospecting or not. This is probably because in network marketing you are expected to LIKE prospecting and this question certainly implies that fact.


You should avoid asking LEADING questions in network marketing.

If you want to build open and trusting relationships that ultimately lead to a strong and successful business you should avoid manipulating communication to get the response YOU WANT by using leading questions. Leave that for the journalists - they are very good at using this skill, particularly when they are interviewing politicians. Listen carefully the next time you hear a politician being interviewed in the media and you will see exactly what I mean!




MULTIPLE QUESTIONS


It is very important that you don't compromise your questioning skills by asking multiple questions all at once - this will create CONFUSION, and you know CONFUSION is NOT a good thing for your network marketing business!


For example you might say something like this at the conclusion of your opportunity presentation to a prospect:


"I hope you have found this presentation informative - tell me, what part of the presentation did you find most interesting? I was wondering what products might be of particular interest to you, or is it the business opportunity that really got your attention?


Oops!!!

By the time you get to the end of this barrage of questions your prospect is going to be totally confused and to be honest, so are YOU. You are not going to know which question they are responding too, that is, if they are brave enough to answer you at all!




WHY QUESTIONS


"Why questions" are open ended questions and are considered to be effective questions when used appropriately. However, don't overuse "Why questions" as this might feel like you are putting someone on the spot or interrogating them!

WHAT or HOW are often a good replacements for WHY and will work a lot more effectively to open up the conversation without putting someone on the spot.


For example consider the following questions. As a network marketing business owner and leader, you might ask these of someone in your coaching group:


You could say:


  • "WHY are you having difficulties with prospecting?"


Or by using effective questioning techniques you could rework this question using WHAT or HOW as alternatives:


  • "WHAT communication skills do you feel confident using when you are presenting your business opportunity to a prospect?"
  • "HOW do you feel about presenting to a prospect who is potentially interested in looking into your business opportunity?"





SUMMARY


  • Effective questioning is an essential communication skill and one that I would encourage you to learn, practice and apply until you are competent and confident to use it regularly in your business.
  • Poor questioning limits the communication process by not providing opportunities for open and honest dialogue. This can have a negative impact on your network marketing business.
  • Effective questioning keeps the lines of communication open and allows people the opportunity to explore their thinking and make a significant contribution to any conversation.
  • Effective questioning provides a clear process for building relationships with prospects, serving customers, coaching business partners and leading your team.
  • Learning how to ask effective questions will build your communication skills and in so doing your overall network marketing business competence and success.



Remember, it's all about using effective questions that help you CONNECT with people!

Unlock the Key to Open Communication with Effective Questioning that Gets Results!




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