“Hey, man, how old are you?”
A simple question. Right? I have had this question posed to me. Most times, when asked, the inquisitor is not merely looking for a number. Sometimes the question is infused with: “man, you look good for your age,” or, “really, man, and you are still behaving like THAT?”
Especially in the world of performance, when the stakes are typically elevated, the tactic behind the scripted question is seldom “retrieve information.”
Remember to always look for the intention behind your deliver when asking or answering questions. It’s never just about facts. Sometimes, how you feel will infuse your question/answer.
Here are a few examples of questions not looking for answers:
“Where are you going?” = could mean “Please don’t leave.” Your tactic could be “keep them in the room.”
“My name is Tony Montana” (from the movie Scarface) = could mean “Who the eff do you think you are for asking me?” A tactic could be “challenge them.”
Does this make sense?