23 February 2007

So What? Beta

"Inches make champions." Vince Lombardi

What is the difference between what and so what?

What is to get information for the sake of getting information. "What is your name" is to get to know a person's name. It helps break the ice, and prompts more follow-up questions. People asking "what do you think?" may not be really interested in the answer. They may just not like the dead air, or do not know what to say next.
"What" is a neutral question. It is used when people are curious about something.

So what is also to get information, but it demands more. It goes beyond curiosity. People asking so what questions do not only want to know more, but they are also serious about how they are going to be affected. Are they going to be benefited at the end of the day? What's in it for them? If it has no real benefits, nobody will pursue further. There has to be something in the so what answers. People answering the so what questions have to be prepared in order to move forward. So what sounds like offensive and negative, but if handled well, it delivers positive experience. The person asking the so what question is actually looking for relevance. Relevance is an indication of potential positive touchpoint experience.

So... what is so? Why a "so" can create so much difference? After all, so is just a conjunction.

It is always the little things that say so much. Never underestimate the power of one seemingly insignificant touchpoint.

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