The former first lady of the United States, Eleanor Roosevelt said:
“I think, at a child’s birth, if a mother could ask a fairy godmother to endow it with the most useful gift, that gift would be curiosity.”
The ability to ask great questions is an important life skill. What you are really trying to do is to find Areas of Commonality.
Ask open ended questions. Avoid questions that require simple yes or no.
People love to talk about themselves. Here are a few simple questions that can get the conversation started:
Where you are from?
Tell me about your family.
How long have you been doing this?
What do you like most about your job / business?
What do you like least about it?
What would you like to wave a magic wand and change?
What do you like to do for fun?
What do you see yourself doing five years from now?
What has been your biggest challenge in life?
Tell me about a perfect day for you and your family.
“The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing.”
Here’s an excerpt from David Bradford’s new book — Up Your Game!
Connecting, relating, having top-of-mind status with others, creating a following – it’s all about feeling, sincere curiosity, real emotion, trust, loyalty, and real interest. When you combine genuine interest in people with an ability to pose a series of great questions, the doors of opportunity will open to you.
In a February 2013 article in Forbes magazine entitled, “Things Leaders Do”, we learn that great managers “ask questions and seek counsel all the time.” From the outside, it appears they know everything but “inside, they have a deep thirst for knowledge and constantly are on the look-out to learn new things.” In other words, they are curious.
Sometimes we become intimidated by overthinking the process. If you want to increase your impact with people, get interested! It’s that easy.
How do you learn to genuinely connect with people? How do you learn to extend yourself, your interest, and your compassion for those around you and warm up so they feel your personality?
My belief is that endearment of people comes only after your curiosity about them begins.