Questions you don't know the answers to

Philip Morgan

Somewhere along the way I heard the advice: _"Never ask a question you don't already know the answer to."_This is terrible advice, unless you're a trial attorney cross-examining a witness. In that case, your questions are really more like loosely-scripted dialogue in a sort of play.But in work where your expertise creates economically valuable results for clients, avoiding questions you don't already know the answer is the worst thing you can do.If the notion of avoiding questions you don't already know the answer to appeals to you, I suspect it is because you'd like to protect your ego more than you'd like to help your clients. The only thing wrong with this is that it shuts off most of the avenues there are for cultivating exceptionally valuable expertise and helping clients apply that expertise. In other words, the only thing wrong with wanting to protect your ego more than you want to help your clients is it'll make you a terrible consultant.But that's probably not you. You probably are interested in learning by asking good questions that you don't have the answers to.If you're doing this to learn about a market vertical you might decide to focus on but don't have much or any experience with, there are 4 ways you could go about it:

  • Do what you can via Google searching
  • Speak to your competitors
  • Do customer development or JTBD research
  • Try to get sales conversations happening

The second workshop in Specialization School uses the first three methods on that list.Workshop registration is open now, but closes April 22, so if you're interested in getting the kind of support and guidance these workshops offer, the best thing to do is to set up a call with me to make sure the fit is ideal: description and schedule of workshops is always available at