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Qualifying questions

I bought a second-hand bicycle the other day. I was pretty excited and in the rush to seal the deal clarity was lost. The exact specification of what was and was not included was unclear.

The outcome of that uncertainty was a misunderstanding on my part and that of the vendor about just what I would get for the amount we agreed.

The deal almost blew out.

As a sales consultant I was trained to ask questions; to find the need, to understand the buyers situation so that the solution I presented met the project requirements. It was my job to figure out if we were a good fit for the client and vice versa.

All our dealings require clarity. The more precise we are in our questions, the better chance we have of understanding our clients, friends, partners – clarity is the bedrock of effective communication.

Qualifying questions helps us to understand what the other really means.