A Dozen Fudgesicles: Why Questions Matter

My friend broke his arm in a bicycle accident. I knew just what to do: Take him a dozen fudgesicles. My wife wondered, why? I told her that’s just what you do when somebody is laid up.

You might take a good book. A magazine. A DVD. A box of chocolates. Or a bottle of wine. I take a dozen fudgesicles. After a week I asked my friend how he liked the fudgesicles. He said his roommate ate them all and liked them quite a lot. I asked, “Why did he do that?” His answer: “I don’t really like fudgesicles.”

One of the Hive core values is: Listen to Understand. It’s definitely key to a successful social media program for hospitals. That seems pretty fundamental. But in this case, it wasn’t just that I didn’t listen. It was that I didn’t even ask the question. Some primal place went into action without me even stopping to ask my friend what he needed.

Which raises the question: How many decisions are you making each day, thinking you know the right answer, without even asking the question?

Do you know your patients? Do you understand what they really want from your hospital – besides feeling better? Are your current marketing activities answering your patients’ questions? Are there things you should start doing? And, perhaps more importantly, things you should stop doing?

In your busy, harried, pressured day, carve out time to slow down and ask questions. Asking the right question is essential to listening to understand.

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