Summary of Ask the Right Question!

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Ask the Right Question! book summary


6 Overall

8 Applicability

5 Innovation

5 Style


Author Rupert Eales-White emphasizes the importance of using active listening, focusing on a particular subject, and asking good open-ended questions to get productive results from interviews and conversations. He mixes a few examples with specific how-to principles outlining ways to structure effective conversations. This generally solid book has the feel of a textbook. Some readers may find it too structured or basic, since the author breaks down conversations into sentences with some detail. The book’s approach may be more appropriate in organizational cultures where people prefer a focused style of questioning. Those who prefer a more informal, casual conversational style may find his approach less suitable. getAbstract recommends this book to human resource professionals, to those facing critical interviews, and to those who wish to think strategically about their conversational, information-gathering, or persuasive skills.

In this summary, you will learn

  • How to have more effective conversations
  • Why and how you should become a better listener
  • Why short conversations and closed questions do not save time; and
  • Why silence is preferable to an unproductive conversation

About the Author

Rupert Eales-White is a management consultant with PA Consulting’s Sundridge Park Executive Development Centre in the United Kingdom. He is the author of several books including Creating Growth from Change: How to React, Develop, and Grow. He focuses on helping managers and executives develop better leadership, strategic thinking, teamwork, and change management skills.



The Key to Having an Effective Conversation
The major reason conversations have poor or negative outcomes is a failure to ask the right questions. Few people have been taught "the art and science of effective questioning."

These failures are reflected in a number of key ...

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