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Power Questions: Build Relationships, Win New Business, and Influence Others Hardcover – February 7, 2012
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“A powerful question can turn a tepid conversation into a revealing encounter, as demonstrated by Andrew Sobel and Jerold Panas in their engaging new book, Power Questions...first-rate and very helpful.”—The Globe and Mail
“Power Questions...is already my favorite, keep-it-close-at-hand business book. I read the book in a single sitting and within 24 hours landed a speaking engagement by asking a few of the “337 Essential Questions” that Sobel and Panas have carefully matched to 35 common business-related situations.”—Forbes.com
“Forget trying to be brilliant or clever on your feet to sell a prospect. Power questions will refocus meetings, stop people in their tracks and help you win new business.”—American Express.com, “Top 10 Business Books for the Summer”
“An inspirational read...strongly recommended”—Midwest Library Journal
The greatest gift you can give someone is to ask what he or she thinks, and truly listen to the answer. Sobel and Panas turn this powerful idea into practical, compelling advice by asking questions that reveal surprising, often life-changing, answers.—Ralph W. Shrader, Chairman and CEO, Booz Allen Hamilton
This book is amazing. It packs a wallop. It gets you inside the mind and heart of a person. I strongly recommend it.—John Schlifske, Chairman and CEO, Northwestern Mutual
Power Questions is easy to pick up, but hard to put down. Andrew and Jerry give a veritable playbook for building stronger relationships. Whether you read it cover-to-cover or just open a page to prepare for a new meeting, it’s a valuable resource no matter where you are in your career.—Frank D'Souza, CEO, Cognizant
Read this remarkable book and keep it handy, because these questions have the power to enrich every segment of your life.—Ken Blanchard, coauthor of The One Minute Manager® and Leading at a Higher Level
Reading Power Questions is like listening in to the most amazing array of private conversations with CEOs, politicians, religious authorities, and entrepreneurs. A joyous read.—David Sable, Global CEO, Young & Rubicam
Andrew Sobel and Jerry Panas have developed the thought-provoking thesis in their book of the importance of asking questions to tailor advice and build relationships. Their work is illustrated with plenty of examples, and their premise becomes more convincing page by page.—Sir Winfried Bischoff, Chairman, Lloyds Banking Group
From the Inside Flap
Unlock the power of great questions
What do you think most engages a prospective client, or makes a lasting impression on someone you've just met? The popular belief is that we win business by being clever and quick on our feet, and that our brilliance—saying just the right thing—is what attracts others. But as Power Questions compellingly demonstrates, knowing the right question to ask is actually far more important than having a ready answer.
Power Questions can immediately help you win more business, deepen your relationships, and connect with people more rapidly than you ever thought possible. It shows you how to use thought-provoking questions to engage prospects and uncover their most pressing issues. It gives you the tools to get inside the heart and mind of anyone you meet. In thirty-five inspiring chapters, you'll meet a fascinating group of men and women. Through these riveting, real-life stories, you'll learn exactly how each power question was used and the impact it had. You'll discover how you can transform your daily conversations—and even someone's life—through powerful questions that anyone can master.
You'll learn how Steve Jobs asked a single motivating question that led to breakthrough results in developing the Macintosh personal computer. You'll see how an unasked question cost a major company a huge project bid. Other powerful examples include:
- The question that stopped an angry executive in his tracks
- The sales question CEOs expect you to ask, versus the questions they want you to ask
- The question that can radically refocus any meeting
- A simple question that helped restore a marriage
- The penetrating question that can transform the life of a friend or colleague
Put these questions to use and you will connect more deeply with your clients, drive quickly to the heart of problems, and unlock your professional and personal influence in unexpected and delightful ways.
Top Customer Reviews
The book present 35 distinct chapters that cover various approaches with real-life anchor stories to demonstrate the questions you should be asking. Where most books stop, but Power Questions keeps delivering is the section included at the end of each chapter, "Suggestions for How To Use This Question." Sobel offers some addition advice around (A) When to use the question (B) Alternative versions of the question and (C) Follow-up questions you may use in the conversation.
And as if that's not enough, there's a final chapter that's a fun, but one of the most practical sections of the book -- there's hundreds of more questions (293 to be exact) sorted into 9 buckets that you can use in your client relationships.
This is one of those books where you can put the advice into action, well before you reach the end of the book. I found myself trying to employ the new perspectives gained each time before I picked-up the book again for the next chapter. Loved it.
Power Questions will help you equally with clients, colleagues, friends, and family. Rather than just a list of interesting questions, the book is built around a series of actual conversations that were transformed by a question. Sobel and his coauthor Panas are great storytellers, and I found myself drawn to read the next chapter as soon as I finished the one I was on. The questions they highlight are a mixture of ones you would use in a professional situation and others that might be more appropriate with family and friends. Here are some that I liked: Chapter 7--"How did you get started?" Here they recount a conversation with Rich DeVos, the founder of Amway. Chapter 8--"Do you mind if we start over?" The idea here is that when you get off on the wrong foot with someone, you can reset the conversation rather than keep digging a hole. Chapter 11--"Is this the best you can do?" This describes how Steve Jobs used this question to drive Apple engineers to the brink of insanity--and great results.Read more ›
How so "interdependent"? If an organization does not build and constantly strengthen relationships with everyone involved in the given enterprise, it will lose its most valuable employees, clients, and allies and, for the same reasons, fail to replace them. True, this company "influences others" but in all he wrong ways.
Sobel and Panas organize their material within 35 chapters that contain a total of 42 questions (five in Chapter 35) within a narrative significantly enhanced by anecdotes that illustrate the power of questions that can either strengthen or weaken a relationship, increase or reduce the chances of achieving a desired objective. Then 293 additional "Power" questions are provided in the final section, "Not Just for Sunday."
I really appreciate how cleverly Sobel and Panas frame their material in a reader-friendly fashion. For example, they pose a question and then suggest how and when to use that question most effectively. One of my personal favorites is "Is this the best you can do?" apparently one that many others such as Steve Jobs and Henry Kissinger have frequently posed.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is a great book. If you are a sales person, work with customers, or just want to learn how to better talk to your family -- I can't recommend this book enough. Read morePublished 1 day ago by Carlton Davenport
Bought this from a recommendation of a friend. Very insightful.Published 11 days ago by Taylor Gilliland
Fantastic reference in an easy-to-consume format. I just finished the book and the next book I plan to read is this same book again! Thank you, Andrew Sobel!Published 23 days ago by Billy Bob Brigmon
Interesting ideas, but the authors' tone is so self-congratulatory it is completely annoying. I could only get through 1/3 of it.Published 1 month ago by Kristin Lennea Ellis
I'm reading this for work and professional improvement - I'm glad that I bought it.Published 2 months ago by Susie
Great read, you have to put it into practice to actually see the differencePublished 3 months ago by rafael rios