Are you using Alan Whicker’s questioning technique?

By Jeremy Blake on March 29, 2022

Alan Whicker was a brilliant journalist and television presenter who was also superb at interviewing his subjects and getting them to talk. If he was still alive, he'd now be 101.

What he did was ask a question, and then having received the initial response from the person he was interviewing he would simply follow up with a “hmmmm?” Or a “riiiiiiight?’ Sometimes his guests might require a little more, a short phrase such as “in what way?” or the one I absolutely love, my personal favourite, he would smile and nod with a “go on?”

So many people ask a question, get a response and are desperate to line up their next question. I say you can pitch your tent and camp out in the question you have already asked. It's not about going very wide, it's about going inches wide but miles deep, and you can do this by Whickering your customers.

As a sales manager when you're next having a coaching session or catching up with one of your people just ask, “what happened when you Whickered him?”

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