August 1, 2011
You would like to be a better communicator, especially because you tend to drive the conversations without letting the other person in as often as you could. You may also like turning it more into a “dialog” where you both are equally putting in ideas and building off of each other.
Using an interactive skill like asking questioning can easily bring the other parties into the conversation by tossing the control back to them, and still keep you in the mix.
When you feel you are taking up too much air time or the others in the discussion are just not participating as much as you would like, convert your next statement into a question.
Before: We need to have another meeting in the next 30 days and it should be nearby.
After: What is the timeframe the group is thinking of for the next meeting? Any suggestions for location?
Before: You should have left that issue out of the discussion with the customer and just gone on to our proposal.
After: What would have worked better for you in getting that customer to consider our proposal?
Before: I want to move on to the last agenda item.
After: Is everyone ready to move on to the last agenda item?
The most open questions begin with What and How. Try using those to start your questions.