Questioning Techniques for Better Communication

 In Communication

Questioning Techniques for Better Communication

Questioning Techniques

Asking the right questions can help us find the information we are looking for when we need it. This skill is essential for customer service staff. Advisors have many options for developing this skill.

The same principle applies to communication in general. If you ask the wrong question, you will probably get the wrong answer or not what you were hoping for.

Effective communication and information exchange is only possible when you ask the right questions. You can improve your communication skills by asking the right questions in each situation. You can learn more and gather more information. This will allow you to build stronger relationships and manage people better. It also allows you to help other people learn.

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Questioning Techniques for Better Communication

Being Structured
It may be necessary to ask a lot of questions if you’re conducting research or working in a field that requires you to record information.

It is a good idea, before you ask questions, to tell the respondent. This will make the respondent more open to your questions and allow you to explain why they are acceptable.

Use silence
Silence is a powerful method of asking questions. Like other interpersonal interactions, pauses in speech can be used to highlight points and allow all parties to regroup before moving on.

An average of three seconds of pause before asking a question can be helpful to stress the importance of the question. It can be beneficial to pause for three seconds immediately after a question. This can help the asker not to ask another question, and it will indicate to the respondent that a reply is needed.

After a response, a respondent may be motivated to continue their answer by pausing. Studies have shown that pauses lasting less than three seconds are less effective.

Encouraging Participation
This technique allows for maximum benefits. One way to maximize the effectiveness of the technique is to redirect a question that was being asked by an active member to someone who is less active or inclined to answer the question without having to ask directly. These situations should be handled with care as some people find group speaking stressful. They can feel embarrassed, awkward or uncomfortable. You should encourage, but not force, quieter members to join the group.

Tips for better communication through questioning

1. Open and Closed Questions

An open question is one that asks how, what and when. It cannot be answered simply with a yes or no.

2. Funnel Questions

Funnel questions are derived from The Funnel Effect.

Step 1: Ask open questions Open questions about the topic at hand are a good way to begin the conversation. This will provide you with all the information that you need to continue the conversation.
Step 2: Asking probing questions These questions will enable you to dig deeper into customer answers to your open question, and uncover the emotions and reasons behind them.

3. TED Questions – Tell, Explain, Describe

TED can be your best friend when you use probing questions.

Here are some examples of TED question examples:

Let me know how that will affect you.
Do you remember this happening before?
Tell me: What was your primary motivation to call?
Please explain to me the impact this has had on your …?
Please explain to me how this happened.

4. Leading Questions

A leading question is one that leads to a specific answer. It can be used in customer service and sales to try to influence a response.

These questions can be used to persuade fence-sitters who are struggling to make a decision.

Other examples of leading questions are:

Option A includes free delivery. If you use our service often, you’ll save money. This would be a great value.
You have the option of Option B, which comes with a quality guarantee. Are you sure that this is what you wanted?

5. Signposting

Signposting can be a great way for customers to ask questions and to engage them. This will not only save you time, but will also allow customers to plan ahead for what they will be asked.

6. Customer Validation

Actively validating the information they provide is the simplest way to get more information from customers.

Make it easy for customers to share more.

You have made a wonderful decision.
I can understand why you choose that option.
I can see what your intentions were.
To avoid being patronising, keep your tone positive and authentic. To help you do that, smile while speaking.

7. Push and Pull Communication

People communicate in different ways. Customers will respond more positively to our probing if they can communicate with us in the most appropriate way.

This doesn’t have be difficult, since customers will prefer one of the two communication methods.

Push Communication- To ask lots of questions to the customer.
Pull Communication- This is sharing lots of information with customers.

8. Filtering

Many factors influence what information we give and what we withhold when we talk to customers or probe them for further insights.

To communicate effectively with customers, it is important to identify the main reasons they call. We can do this using “filtering”, which is a probing technique.

9. Get it up!

Another technique that focuses on matching customer preferences regarding how they communicate with us and how much information we provide them.

Big Chunk Customers These customers tend to be focused on the big picture, and don’t care about details.
Customers who are small chunks- Customers are very particular and care about the details.

10. Reframing the Conversation

An advisor can help customers who seem in a hurry to make the conversation more interesting. The best place to begin is telling the customer what you will do.

Summary

Use positive language, be enthusiastic and energetic in your delivery if you want to motivate people to answer the questions that you ask.

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