Good Questions = Effective Closing

Good Questions = Effective Closing

Ed Trost, Ph.D.


Whenever I conduct business development seminars the most common question I'm asked is "How can I improve my closing skills?" When I follow-up with some additional questions as to why closing is so difficult, the usual response has something to do with the client just not being convinced that we are the right law firm for them.

Well, in all likelihood the client wasn't ready to buy since the attorney hadn't either fully uncovered their needs or wasn't listening carefully to what the client had said. When we think of the person who could sell "ice to Eskimos" or the slick used car salesperson, it's usually the type that loves to hear them self talk about how great their product is, but has such poor listening skills they really have no clue as to what the customer wants.

Great business developers are those that:

  • Ask good questions that uncover client needs
  • Actively listen to those needs
  • Match the features and benefits of their firm to those needs

Asking good questions is not necessarily an easy thing to do. It requires that you:

  • Have thought out in advance questions that are relevant, thought-provoking and client–oriented
  • Practice asking questions that you have prepared to a colleague (role-play)
  • Ask the questions in a conversational and comfortable manner. Nobody likes to feel like they are being interrogated by someone

The time you spend in front of a client are "moments of truth." Effective questioning will often determine whether a client likes, respects, and trusts you—all crucial elements of whether they will do business with you.

Remember, if you ask good questions that uncover your client's needs and you have a service that fulfills those needs the client will most likely "close" themselves. Why wouldn't they?? Certainly, that doesn't mean that you may not have to ask that final closing question. But more often than not, a simple "Wouldn’t you agree?" or "How does that sound?" will suffice.



Leadership insights in your inbox.

Nationally acclaimed speaker

International bestselling author Jeff Wolf is now available for your next meeting, conference or convention to provide a high-energy presentation filled with strategies and techniques attendees can immediately apply to improve their skills.