Next time someone asks you to repeat a question, count the number of words. Chances are it was more than ten. I’ve often noticed this happening with salespeople talking with prospects and clients and executives speaking with members of their team. What’s the issue? Our brains process questions of less than ten words much more effectively than those that exceed ten.
Each time we pose a question of more than ten words, the listener spends more time focusing on the question and less on their answer. Even if they don’t ask you to repeat the question, which often happens, he or she is still too focused on your question.
Questions using ten words or less are understood more quickly and answered more thoroughly. This generates lots of details, a richer conversation, and even more buy-in.
Our Sales Mantra in Sales Yoga reminds us to:
Say little, ask a lot.
As we ask lots of questions to understand the thoughts and needs of those around us, it benefits everyone if we use less words in questions, prompting the listener to give lots of details.