Breakout

Interview your stakeholders like a librarian

Have you ever delivered exactly what your manager or colleagues asked for ... only to hear “No, this isn’t what I wanted at all”? Presented content that fulfilled every requirement you were given, only to have it rejected? Tried to find out what your end users needed only to hear the echo of old Henry Ford saying “if I’d asked them what they wanted they would’ve said ‘faster horses’”? These communication issues can sink your team or project before it gets started—but they don’t have to.

Librarians know that people often don’t ask for what they really need. By asking the right kinds of questions at the right time, you too can deploy ninja librarian mind-reading tactics! Anne Haines will draw on over a decade of library reference experience to help you discover new strategies for wowing stakeholders by giving them what they didn’t even know they needed.

Attendees will:

  • Understand the power of question negotiation, active listening, and other strategies which can help you steer your stakeholders towards more effective communication.
  • Explore different kinds of questions that can work in a wide range of contexts to help you collaboratively define your stakeholders’ problems so that you can get to work solving them.
  • Consider ways to apply active empathy in order to foster a more transparent and productive collaboration.

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