Do you fear the Q&A session?

I find that a lot of people are worried about the question and answer session at the end of their presentations. I think it’s because they can’t prepare this time as carefully as they can the actual presentation itself.

So what can you do once you’ve asked your audience: Do you have any questions? Here are my tips:

  • Repeat the question so that others in the audience can hear it and that you have a bit of time to think about an answer.
  • Thank the person for the question: Thank you for your question. / That is a great question. / I’m pleased you asked it. / I get asked that question by many people.
  • Check that you fully understand the question: If I understand you correctly, you’re asking me if I can …
  • Answer the question and then check if it’s what the person wanted:  Does that answer your question?
  • If you can’t answer the question, be honest and say so. You might even like to ask the audience for help: Does anyone know the answer?
  • And do remember to make a note of questions you can’t answer directly and promise to answer them later:  I can’t answer your question now, but I know someone who can. I’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

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Written by Christine Burgmer

1. July 2015