Preparing For a Powerful Delivery
Answer the Tough Questions
Before They’re Asked
Always plan for a question and
answer session, even if you never do them. At some
point, your host is likely to address the audience with,
“Are there any questions for our speaker?”
You need to be prepared for this
eventuality. Before you speak, think about your content
and consider what questions might come from it. Develop
your answers well in advance, so you’re armed with the
information, should it be required. In addition, carry
any supporting evidence you might need to substantiate
your answer. It’s very impressive when an audience
member asks a question, and the speaker is already
prepared with an answer, complete with evidence.
On the other hand, you may hold a
question and answer session, and have no questions
asked. This can be highly uncomfortable for a speaker.
So, what do you do?
Having a list of questions handy
can get you out of this jam in a flash. If you open the
floor to questions and there are none, this doesn’t
necessarily mean that there aren’t any questions. It
more likely means that no one’s brave enough to ask one.
So, wait a few seconds, and, if it becomes apparent that
there are no questions about to be asked, simply take
control by saying, “One question that’s often asked is…”
State a question and then answer it. This technique will
not only take the pressure off you, by eliminating the
awkward silence, but it may also prime your audience to
open up and pose additional questions.
So, what’s the lesson? Always
have answers for the tough questions in case you need