Here's a great quote from Seth Godin - "Better to have a difficult conversation now than a failed customer interaction later."
Customers sometimes want to get to point Z without going thought the rest of the alphabet - they want the end result now. And, even internally, the temptation to skip all those steps that lead to point Z is ever present.
Sometimes you can jump right to point Z without doing those pesky preliminary steps. But that's a recipe for disaster and heartbreak.
A customer says "We need a house. Build it."
Sure, you can do that. But wouldn't you first ask why and what type and what for and what's your living style?
Of course you would.
And if they reply with, "We just need it and we need it fast," that's when you need to push those questions harder.
If they don't know 'why,' and you build it anyway - without strategy, the house will quickly crumble. And that customer won't have anything to do with you anymore.
While 'why' may seem obvious, it rarely is. You have to ask.