Just Ask!

August 17th, 2015 | Personal Growth

Excerpted from the “Introduction” of “Just Ask the Right Questions to Get What You Want” with the permission of the author – Professor Ian Cooper 

Do you know what holds you back more than anything else? Let me tell you bluntly now in the second line of this book: your failure to ASK for what you want!

If I pushed you into instantly telling me the things you wanted to achieve and improve in your business, career or personal life, your mind would initially go blank. Eventually however you would come up with a whole shopping list of ‘wants’ and aspirations. Once we get rid of the flippant sports cars, sun-baked beaches and digital plasma turbo-powered televisions and the more general, “I just want world peace and to make the world a better place”, the likelihood is that regardless of whether you are focusing on your business or personal life:

  • You would like existing customers or clients to buy more!
  • You’d quite like to increase your prices or fees!
  • You would like to get a better deal on the goods or services you are thinking of buying!
  • You would like a promotion, a raise in pay, increased responsibility or all three!
  • There is someone you’d like to take out and develop a relationship with for business or personal reasons.
  • If you are self-employed you’d like more time to do other things and the chance to sell out at some stage with a decent pot of cash to worry about!
  • You would like to be fitter, healthier and if you have medical problems to find a quick and painless solution.

I have good news for you. I can guarantee you right now, before you go any further with your reading, that there is a two word instruction that if followed, can immediately bring you closer to success with all of these desires more often than you have previously managed.

These two words are the ‘holy grail’ of personal and business success. The problem is they appear so obvious, clichéd, personally challenging, embarrassing or uncomfortable that they are often ignored, forgotten or deliberately avoided for fear of rejection.



That’s it!

Everything after this is mere detail, technique and a way of thinking and that is what the rest of this book is about! So now you have a choice! Let me ask you a question. Are you going to stop now having learnt the ingredients for success OR are you going to read the rest of the book to find out the method to make them work?

Remember, if there is something you want, just ask for it outright.

“Surely, it can’t be that simple?”, you’re thinking to yourself… but how do you know? … I mean how do you really know? Have you tried it out?

Let me ask you some blunt questions:

  • When have you actually asked a customer outright to buy more from you? No, I don’t mean send them a carefully and cleverly worded letter, casually mentioning various other services in the hope that they will rush to spend their money with you. I mean when did you last very specifically ask an existing customer to buy more from you?
  • When did you last ask your customers or clients to pay more for your various goods or services? Let me ask you something else … what percentage of your customer or client base complain about your charges and then stop buying from you? If it is less than 10% you are simply not charging enough! Think about it!
  • Imagine you are buying something in a shop, booking a hotel or engaging someone to perform a service for you. When was the last time you bluntly asked for a better deal?
  • Do you want a raise or a promotion or more responsibility? Have you ever gone in to your boss and asked outright?
  • Suppose you want to meet someone either for personal or business reasons, what do you do? I know many people who have gone to great lengths to contrive to meet them, only to find limited opportunities to talk because of the constraints of the place, time or good taste. Why not just pick up the phone and ask them to meet you?
  • If you have some health related problem, have you ever asked for a second opinion? Have you asked about alternative remedies? When did you last ask your doctor to review your cocktail of pills and medications?

The truth is most people have rarely considered these questions and asked outright for these things. If you have, then you will know there are only three possible outcomes:

Yes!   Maybe!   No!

Although, I confess to you now that you are never going to succeed 100% of the time: in order to maximize the chances of getting a ‘yes’, turning the ‘maybes’ into a ‘yes’ and converting the ‘nos’ to something more positive, you need to know exactly how to ask to get the outcome you want.

That of course is what this book is all about. Of course I also recognize that simply blurting out your innermost desires as Aladdin did whilst clutching his lamp is not the answer. You need to be respectful, courteous, thoughtful and sensible if you are going to be successful at ‘just asking’.  At the very least, say “Please!”

By the end of the book you will have unconsciously absorbed the ‘just asking mindset’; understood the ‘Golden Rules of Asking’ and been introduced to the ‘Technology of Questions™’. These are a combination of simple common sense tips and linguistic techniques, which anyone can learn and master very quickly. They have all been tried and tested successfully by myself and others many times, and over the last 20 years I have trained thousands of business and professional people how to use them. You too will be able to access and use all these newly acquired techniques.

I am also going to give you a whole set of Questions To ‘Just Ask’ Yourself. This section realizes that getting what you want is not always simply measured in terms of financial, business and career success. By asking yourself appropriate questions so that your mind is forced to focus on certain personal issues, there are many ways in which you can enhance the quality of your life and improve your personal performance in a whole host of areas.

In addition you will also find a section on various life situations where ‘just asking’ is hugely important. These cover making decisions, getting medical help, making conversation, making better deals and complaining when it becomes necessary.

Note from Bob:  You will want to get your hands on Professor Ian Cooper’s book:  “Just Ask the Right Questions to Get What You Want.”  This was a page-turner for me!  You will be amazed by seeing a multitude of new ways that you will be able to leverage the power of questions.

IanCooper Head shotProfessor Ian Cooper has been described as a ‘serial achiever’, London based, he is an international author of 15 books with in 55 countries and 13 languages, including the successful and influential ‘Financial Times Guide To Business Development’, recently shortlisted for the best management / business book of the year award. In addition to advising hundreds of businesses and organizations of all sizes for over 30 years, Ian is also a successful entrepreneur who has created and run a number of successful businesses. With approximately 1000 professional speaking engagements Ian has inspired thousands of businesses and individuals with his light and engaging style to improve their own performance, get better results and make things happen.  You can connect with Ian on his website.




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