(Photo by David Goehring)
If you have been in business for a while, you have no doubt fielded the same questions over-and-over-and-over. The person asking (a prospective client, perhaps) is sincere. But you have heard the same questions and your been giving the same answers year-after-year. And if you are not careful, your frustration at hearing the same question is likely to seep into your response, and you risk alienating your prospective client.
The secret is to improve your empathic listening skills.
Concierges in hotels face this exact challenge daily. Each guest is experiencing things for their first time, and they want to know the answer to their (familiar) question. The best concierges project an air of enthusiastic curiosity and willingness to help because they (try to) remember what it’s like not to be an expert, and to know that their answers have the potential to create powerful lasting memories for their guests.
The next time someone asks the question you have anticipated, stop, breathe, and see if you can make someone feel very special. That single act could create a lifetime of good will.