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Ask More

Book Description

What hidden skill links successful people in all walks of life? What helps them make smart decisions? The answer is surprisingly simple: They know how to ask the right questions at the right time.

Questions help us break down barriers, discover secrets, solve puzzles, and imagine new ways of doing things. But few of us know how to question in a methodical way. Emmy-award-winning journalist and media expert Frank Sesno aims to change that with Ask More.

From questions that cement relationships, to those that help us plan for the future, each chapter in Ask More explores a different type of inquiry. By the end of the book, you’ll know what to ask and when, what you should listen for, and what you can expect as the outcome. Packed with illuminating interviews, the book explains:

    • How the Gates Foundation used strategic questions to plan its battle against malaria
    • How turnaround expert Steve Miller uses diagnostic questions to get to the heart of a company’s problems
    • How NPR’s Terry Gross uses empathy questions to dig deeper
    • How journalist Anderson Cooper uses confrontational questions to hold people accountable
    • How creative questions animated a couple of techie dreamers to brainstorm Uber

    Both intriguing and inspiring, Ask More shows how questions convey interest, feed curiosity, and reveal answers that can change the course of both your professional and personal life.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
  2. Title Page
  3. Copyright
  4. Dedication
  5. Acknowledgments
  6. Contents
  7. Foreword
  8. Chapter 1: Why Ask?
  9. Chapter 2: Something’s Not Right: Diagnostic Questions
    1. What’s the Problem?
    2. “Miss Nosy”
    3. The Mystery Patient
    4. Bad News Is Good News
    5. History Is News, Too
    6. Challenge the Expert
    7. After the Diagnosis, the Strategy
  10. Chapter 3: The General’s Charge: Strategic Questions
    1. Set Your Sights
    2. A Strategic Approach
    3. A General’s Command
    4. Eight Yeses
    5. Failure Is an Option
    6. Getting Personal
    7. Challenge Yourself
  11. Chapter 4: From the Inside Out: Empathy Questions
    1. The Good Professor
    2. The Empathetic Interviewer
    3. Therapeutic Inquiry
    4. License and Limits
  12. Chapter 5: The Gentle Interrogator: Bridging Questions
    1. Get Them Talking
    2. Solving Puzzles
    3. Affirm and Acknowledge
    4. Questions Without Question Marks
    5. Echo Questions
    6. Build the Bridge
  13. Chapter 6: For the Record: Confrontational Questions
    1. Care to Listen
    2. Unintended Consequences
    3. Demanding Answers
    4. Confronting Power
    5. An Audience Helps
    6. No Way Out
    7. Blunt Force
  14. Chapter 7: Imagine This: Creativity Questions
    1. Beyond the Possible
    2. Travel in Time
    3. Cutting Strings
    4. Imagined Reality
    5. Ask for Subversion
  15. Chapter 8: The Solvable Problem: Mission Questions
    1. Listening for Common Goals
    2. The Value Proposition
    3. Change the World
    4. Sharing Works
    5. What Brings You Here?
    6. Asking to Listen
    7. Solve Problems with Purpose
  16. Chapter 9: Into the Unknown: Scientific Questions
    1. The Doctor’s Quest
    2. A Mystery Killer
    3. Cultures Clash
    4. Test but Verify
    5. Stretch Yourself
    6. Slow Answers to Slow Questions
  17. Chapter 10: The Edison Test: Interview Questions
    1. Hunting the Best Heads
    2. Look Back, Look Ahead
    3. Finding Innovation
    4. Be Ready for the Curveball
    5. The Candid Candidate
    6. Asking for the Team
    7. Interview the Interviewer
    8. Bright Ideas
  18. Chapter 11: The Inspired Host: Entertaining Questions
    1. Set the Stage, Set the Tone
    2. You’re On!
    3. Supper with Socrates
    4. Asking for Laughs
    5. A Host of Questions
  19. Chapter 12: Lessons for Life: Legacy Questions
    1. Seeking Context
    2. Why Didn’t I Ask?
    3. The Rabbi
    4. Facing Failure
    5. In Search of Meaning
    6. Asking for Life
  20. Chapter 13: I’m Glad I Asked
    1. The Justice of Citizenship
    2. Ask to Lead
    3. Poems of Humanity
    4. Always Asking
    5. Profane and Profound
  21. Question Guide
    1. Diagnostic Questions
    2. Strategic Questions
    3. Empathy Questions
    4. Bridging Questions
    5. Confrontational Questions
    6. Creativity Questions
    7. Mission Questions
    8. Scientific Questions
    9. Interview Questions
    10. Entertaining Questions
    11. Legacy Questions
  22. Index
  23. About the Author
  24. Free Sample The Power of Presence By Kristi Hedges
  25. About Amacom