One Question Gets an Honest Answer and Here’s Why


You know how most third graders (and 4th and 5th graders) don’t like to hear one particular question?

Aunts, uncles and grandparents all seem to ask the same question.

(Note:  this article also applies to sales and is not just about children.)

The question

“How’s school?”

Usual answer: “Fine” or “It’s okay.”

So there is really no way to get a thoughtful answer with that vague question..

Unless the child is loving school and getting all “A”s in every subject.

Then there is the more specific question third graders (or any children in school) are asked:

“What’s your favorite subject?”

This is a good question because it implies interest.  Sounds like the aunt or uncle or family friend really wants to know the answer.

Some children being asked this question stop to think: “How should I answer? What would my mom want me to say?”

True Story

Mary Kate is the smart and beloved grandchild of a friend of mine.

We were visitors in her home when she was in third grade and were having a conversation.

I asked: “What’s your favorite subject?”

She answered: “I don’t have a favorite.”

I thought for a minute and then asked: “If you DID have a favorite subject, what do you think it would be?”

After a few seconds, she answered firmly: “Math.”

Later we learned Mary Kate earns top grades in math.  (Yaaay for girl power!)

The question “if you DID have a favorite subject, what do you think it would be” caused her to stop and think and answer thoughtfully.

Anyone involved in sales asks questions to find out what is most important to prospects and clients.

One question gets an honest answer

In a sales situation, a question similar to the question I asked Mary Kate could be:

“If you could make changes in the office equipment you use, what changes do you feel you would you want?”

Specific and open-ended questions are the best types of questions to ask if you’re in sales, or in any business where an honest answer will let you know how you can best help the customer.

Learn more about authentic and effective questions to ask – plus much more -when you join my sales training e-Course.

And you will:

  • Learn how to create your own unique opening statement which will motivate the prospect to become more interested and end up in more sales for you.
  • Use authentic words that will cause the prospect to trust you and feel that you are there to help her rather than “just get the sale.”
  • Find out exactly how to create trust during the first call.
  • Discover specific questions to ask the prospect that will motivate her to think and share important information you need to move forward with the sale.

To Find out How this e-Course Fits with Your Situation

1.) Send a message to me with your name, company name + email address. Ask anything on your mind and I’ll respond to you within 24 hours.

2.) We will schedule a time for a phone conversation to talk about your situation, challenges and goals.

I look forward to talking with you soon!

- Ann
PS:  You can use your BTA Educational Discount for this e-Course!

How to Find Out the Real Reason for a Hidden Objection

woman-at-laptop-confusedWhen you hear an objection from a prospect – a reason they will not buy from you – it is often not the real reason.

That is a problem.

How do you get to the truth?

Another frustrating situation a sales person faces is the potential client who hesitates to place an order or set an appointment but doesn’t actually say “no.”

You are waiting to hear more . . . but . . . nothing.


What do you do?

You are sure the prospect needs or wants your products or service.

You’ve had good conversations and answered all questions.

S/he seems interested, but for some reason hasn’t placed the order or agreed to meet with you.

The reason?  It is often the hidden objection:

One four-letter word they don’t want to share with you.

F E A R.

And the reasons for the fear?

* Fear of buying the wrong product.

* Fear of spending too much money.

* Fear of being criticized if the product doesn’t work.

So, how do we handle the fears our prospects have, but will not tell us about?

Three words:

Open-ended questions.

And this is NOT being pushy.

To check and see if you’re on the right track, ask an opinion-seeking question.

The answer will tell you how the prospect feels about what you’ve said, and bring up any concerns s/he may have.

Three Ways to Handle the Hidden Objection

Good questions to ask:

1.) “In your opinion, how do you feel the Laser Gold Service Program would work for your company?”

Don’t ask “Do you think the Laser Gold Service Program is a good idea. . .”

because that will get a logical response and you can find out more information from an emotional response, which you will get by asking how they feel instead of what they think.

2.) Or ask:

“Are you getting the information you need to make a decision?”

3.) If you feel the prospect is close to a decision but you’re not quite sure, you can ask:

“Do we need a purchase order number?”

 The answer to this question will either be “Yes,” or “No,” or “I’m not ready to order yet.”

The first two answers will give you the sale and if you hear the last answer, you can ask:

“What questions can I answer for you?”

To help eliminate prospect fear, use quotes and testimonials from your happy clients.

You can get pre-written copy-and-paste testimonial request letters and emails plus fax-back forms in my e-book containing 63 pre-written business and marketing letters on this page

More ways to handle objections :

Best answer to a price objection


4 Tips to Handle Unexpected Objections

plus – Pre-handle an objection:  How to make an objection disappear

And best of all . . .

You can learn how to eliminate objections at the beginning of your call.  How?

Register for my one-to-one private 4-week e-Course.  (see feedback from my favorite clients on this page.)

Because this course includes four weeks of once-a-week private telephone sales training and coaching where I will work personally with you, the course is limited to the first 10 people who register, so contact me today and I’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

You can see a description of the course + tuition investment on this page or on my blog at

If you are tired of not getting to decision-makers, not grabbing interest when you do reach them and having voice mail messages ignored, I would love to work with you and help you achieve your goals.

To register – and I hope you will – drop me a line today.