Best Practices to Grow Your Consulting Business. Tip #2 Listen More, Ask Questions, Talk Less

I recently participated on the WIC Panel of veteran consultants regarding “If I Only Knew Then What I Know Now” on Best Practices to Grow Your Consulting Business with Deb Siegle of Strategic Marketing Solutions, Kelli Richards of All Access Group,  and Norma Watenpaugh of Phoenix  Consulting Group.

I’d like to share more detail on our second tip.

Listen More, Ask Questions, Talk Less

Listen More Talk Less 2

As consultants we are eager to talk about our services, and ‘sell’ ourselves. I have found that one of the most effective ways to engage with a prospective client is to ask insightful questions about their business and industry. The right type of questions will demonstrate your knowledge, yet get them talking to share their challenges and ‘pain points’. You can then address these and keep the conversation focused on them and their issues.

Another area where I have found this mantra “Listen More, Ask Questions, Talk Less” useful is in negotiations. You can learn a lot about your opponent’s mindset by asking the right questions. They will often reveal useful information about their position on key points. It also helps to foster a feeling of collaboration (vs. adversarial tone) and working together to mutually solve issues towards the desired ‘win-win’ solution for both parties.

Comment back on examples of how you have listened more and asked insightful questions resulting is positive outcomes. I’d love to hear some of your lessons learned and experiences.



  1. A wise and successful sales person once told me that the one that does the talking is doing the selling.
    His insight was that clients would talk themselves into a sale if the sales person just learns to ask good questions and listen actively.

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