5 Types of Open Ended Questions for a Business Meeting with Examples

5 Types of Open Ended Questions for a Business Meeting with Examples

A business meeting is not about you and your product, it's about the client. To find out as much information as possible and let the client do the talking. Open-ended questions that get the client talking will help. Learn how to ask the right questions so the client doesn't feel like they are being interrogated and want to close the deal at the end of the conversation.

Open questions provide more information

Open-ended questions cannot be answered with a yes or no, so they give more space to the respondent and allow them to share more information. In a business meeting, this is exactly what you need. When you ask the right questions, you can find out what the client is worried about and what solution they are looking for, i.e., what you can offer them. Take a look at these five benefits of using open-ended questions in business meetings before we get into the examples.

Open-ended questions advantages

If using open-ended questions seems complicated and you don't know how to use them, prepare all the questions in advance. Make sure that the client cannot give a one-word answer to each one.

TIP: open-ended questions usually begin with the interrogative pronouns who, what, when, where, how, why.

Get inspired by these five types of open-ended questions and examples you shouldn't leave out in a business meeting.

1. Relationship-building questions

The goal of a business meeting is also about building trust and rapport with your client. You can do this by showing interest in the client's business, their needs, and opinions. Plus, this will help you lighten the mood at the beginning of the meeting.


  • How are you doing?
  • What is currently happening in your business?
  • What do you expect from our meeting?
  • How can I help you achieve your goals?

2. Questions about the situation and experience

In order to offer a suitable solution to your client, you need to know their current situation, the difficulties they are facing and their previous experience.

Try questions like:

  • What's stopping you from achieving your goals?
  • How are your current processes working out, are you satisfied with them?
  • How would a change help you?
  • If money wasn't a factor, what would you change?
  • What is your experience with this service?
  • Why have you chosen this service in the past and how has it worked for you?
  • What did you find unsatisfactory?

3. Qualifying questions

In business negotiations, you also need to determine the likelihood of closing the deal with the client. These are questions that are used for qualifying leads.

Instead of closed-ended questions like “Do you like the offer?” or “Are you interested in the offer?”, ask:

  • What do you think of the offer?
  • What has changed since we last met?
  • What is your budget for this service?
  • Who will be deciding with you on the offer?

4. Questions on expectations and goals

Let the client think about the business in the long term and ask about their plans and how your service or product will fit into them. This will make them more aware of the benefits you bring to them with your solution.

Instead of “Do you expect an improvement thanks to our service?”, Ask:

  • What improvements do you expect from using our service?
  • How do you envision the ideal solution?
  • Where will your business move thanks to our service?

5. Questions to help close the deal

Don't forget to add questions at the end of the meeting to help guide the future course of the deal. Make sure the client understands everything and find out what further questions they have.

Instead of “Do you have any questions?” ask this:

  • What other questions do you have that I didn't ask?
  • What are your concerns, what doubts do your colleagues have?
  • How else can I help you make a decision?
  • What is the next course of action?


A few tips at the end

  • Take a roundabout way - don't ask what's bothering the client, but let them describe their day at work, project management, etc. In doing so, you're sure to come across a problem that you can inquire about further.
  • Use others as examples - use the phrase “Companies like yours usually face these problems, do they apply to you as well?” The fact that other companies are experiencing the same difficulties will make it easier for the client to talk about them.
  • Beware of the "Why?" question - it can come across as accusatory. Replace it with “How?”.
  • Listen to the client - don't try to find answers or offer solutions immediately, instead, soak up information and listen to the client's needs.
  • Keep the conversation going, but don't cross-examine - pick a few questions from each section and focus on those, ask questions and don't stick slavishly to a prepared script.


All information from the meeting can be clearly recorded in our RAYNET CRM, for example. Write all your questions in advance and have everything together in one place. You can refer back to it at any time and see it in context.

Business meeting questions