January 2018 – How to Ask Questions


Since our first day in sales, we’ve been told about the importance of asking questions of our prospects and customers. Needs analysis questions, probing questions, implication question, or whatever your company called them – the goals were to learn about their account, and make them feel validated. Many sales managers would critique their sales people if the first words of their presentation were anything but questions for the customer.

Well, times have changed. Understanding your customer is still critical to success, but how a sales person asks the questions is more important than the actual questions. Ask them in the traditional manner, and you’re likely to get one-word, abrupt, and wrong answers. However, a well-positioned sales professional can get their prospect or customer to open their vault of information, providing transparent and accurate answers that your competition isn’t getting.

We’re going to discuss one strategy in this session – the strategy of positioning before asking questions, with the goal of gaining transparent and honest answers that haven’t been shared with your competition.

Learning Objectives:

  • Position yourself with your prospects and customers as the authority before asking questions.
  • Influence your prospects and customers to focus on their problems, and transparently share their full scenario with you.
  • Ask questions that will spark conversation, teaching your audience about the depth of their problems.