Simple, strategic questions

“Judge others by their questions rather than by their answers.”

– Voltaire

I found the perfect sequel to my previous post (“The difference between what and how”)  I found it on Chris Garrett’s blog. His article is titled,  Who, What and So What?” Read it – you will be glad that you did so.

Here is a short excerpt from Chris’ article:

“When you are writing, what is your first thought?

If it is what you are going to write, I expect that would put you in with the majority.

“Who for” is perhaps a more important part of the equation. Connecting to your audience, bringing them something value, means addressing who they are.

A much overlooked aspect though is “So What?”. What should the reader take away? Where is the benefit? Why should we listen to you?”

Great advice! And not just for bloggers. Why?

  • Do you sell a product or service? Does your prospective client clearly see the “So what’s in it for me?”
  • Are you a manager? Do you delegate tasks? Does your staff clearly see the “So what’s in it for me?”
  • Do you send out e-mail messages? Does your audience clearly see the “So what’s in it for me?”

If you are not getting the results that you hoped for, go back and review your message. Re-read it from your audience’s perspective. Do you make it easy for them to see the “So what’s in it for me?”

If your answer is “No,” then it is time for you to revisit what you write and how you phrase it or say it.

Peter Drucker reminds us that:

“It is the recipient who communicates… Unless there is someone who hears, there is no communication. There is only noise.”

People see, hear and act through the filter of “What’s in it for me.”

It does not matter what you want or what you write or what you say. That is not enough to get your audience to see, hear or act on your suggestions.

It does not matter who you are. Do you connect with your audience? Do they see themselves in the picture that you are painting with the words that you write; the words that you speak?

Give your audience the answer to the question, “So what?” Why? Because it does matter – to them!


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