We all want to be viewed as being strategic but it is often hard to know if you are or aren’t being viewed by others as strategic or not.  So I am going to give you a quick fail-proof way to know how you are viewed.

When you present to top level executives they will ALWAYS pull your presentation apart and ask questions.  They are designed to do that as great critical thinkers.  So the object is not to stop them from asking questions but to change the types of questions they ask you.

They will either ask you contraction or expansion questions.  Here is the difference between the two:

Contraction Questions- these are questions that try to quantify and drive to the how in your presentation.  They are usually designed to “contain” you or to check your logic behind your arguments.

When they don’t feel these are adequately answered them or you are answering them tactically and not strategically you will hear something like, “Why don’t you gather some more information…why don’t you meet with…”  In other words, more work for you!

Expansion Questions-These questions look to EXPLORE more opportunities than you even came with.  They will be “what if we did” or “could we”.  They are questions that will solicit your opinion and insight in to the discussion.

When these questions are asked they are telling you they value your input, believe you will be judiciously handle money and resources and they believe you will look at things from a well rounded view point.

TAKE ACTION:  Next time you present listen to the types of questions being asked of you.  If you are getting Expansion Questions you will know they view you as strategic.

Want to make sure you are viewed strategically?  Join us for our next Managing Your Message Experience in September.  Seats are limited so check it out soon!