The most important questions are often the ones you didn’t know to ask. I realized this after my mother’s heart attack more than 10 years ago. In the emergency room’s dark moments of total helplessness, I just didn’t know what to ask her doctors. Afterwards, I vowed to learn how to ask better questions to help my mother get the very best follow-up care from her doctors.
This experience sparked my interest in questioning skills. I was surprised to learn how little attention most people pay to questions. We are so focused on getting answers and solutions that we rarely stop to consider the quality of our questions.
In 2003, I started teaching questioning skills as part of my graduate-level business classes in
My students have tackled hundreds of topics, including the 10 Best Questions® before your marriage (and divorce), planning a wedding and a funeral, to adopt a baby or a dog, to invest in stocks, real estate, or life-long friendships, to buy a house and used car, to decide about staying in a job or relationship, and even the 10 Best Questions® for great sex.
I also conducted a series of interviews with top question askers to learn their secrets, such as legendary White House reporter, Helen Thomas, and dozens of professional authors, interviewers, and radio and television personalities. Each responded with a version of, “You are only as good as the questions you ask.”
Now I’ve adapted my consulting practice to helping companies develop and ask their own customized 10 Best Questions® for improving profits, productivity, customer retention, and strategic thinking capabilities. This formula also helps CEOs to make difficult decisions, such as about new product launches, layoffs, outsourcing, mergers, or how to recession-proof their organizations.
Simon & Schuster learned about me through one of my former students and asked me to write this book to help empower breast cancer patients and their loved ones. I was delighted by their offer because my aunt died of breast cancer at only 33 years old.
Even the best doctors in the world can’t give you the right answers unless you ask them the right questions first. I interviewed dozens of experts and read hundreds of books, articles, and Web sites on breast cancer to boil it all down to the 10 Best Questions® lists (and the Best Answers) in this book. You now have the actual script in hand to make sure you get the very best medical care possible and to help you live well beyond your diagnosis of breast cancer.