Five Questions Can Change a Conversation

A client recently sent me the following email:

"I have used the five questions several times and realized that It has changed the conversation (for the better).  In many cases, after asking the five questions it has changed my approach in the conversation - which has focused it more on the need of the client.  I am also having better a conversation with certain clients that have been more difficult in the past."

Before you talk to a client or prospect, write an article or blog post, create a presentation, design a web page, or prepare for a team meeting ask the following Five Questions for better results.


Who are you addressing? Who do you want to influence educate, motivate into action, or help in some way? By first clearly understanding the audience you are better prepared to focus your thoughts.

Next Action?

What is the next physical action you would like the audience to take after reading, hearing, or seeing your information? If you do not have a specific next action in mind, it is unlikely that your audience will guess what you desire.


Knowing who you are addressing and what you desire them to do, you now know your purpose in creating this document, presentation, webpage, or agenda. Everything you include should support this purpose.


To motivate your audience into action it will be necessary to make the message meaningful to them personally. People are motivated by the pursuit of pleasure and the avoidance of pain. What are the positive and negative motivators for the audience?

Main Point?

Now that you know the audience and what you want them to do and the purpose of your time together and why it is meaningful for them, identify the one main point that will move them into action and focus your document, presentation, webpage, or agenda around that point.

Download a free worksheet here.