How to prepare for your Q&A session

Speaking about Presenting

In 2001, I was a candidate for the Green Party in New Zealand. I spent a ton of time preparing for the “Meet the Candidate” meetings. But I didn’t spend most of my time on planning my presentation. I spent most of my time preparing for the Q&A. I knew this would be the most important part of my performance, and where I was most likely to get hammered if I wasn’t prepared. And because I’m an introvert, thinking on my feet is not a natural strength.

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Never end your presentation with Q&A.

More than PowerPoint...

Never end your presentation with a Q&A. Got that? Don’t end your next presentation by saying, “Any questions?” ” There’s no need to announce that it’s time for questions and answers. You can do better. Always plan a strong closing.

Q&A 52

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Sign up now for Tuesday's Q&A call!

Speak Schmeak

Quick reminder: The next AskLisaB coaching Q&A call is January 11 -- have you submitted your question? If you'd like to know what the calls are like, you can get a free taste here. Sign up now to participate in the next call at 10 a.m. PST on Tuesday, January 11. Then mark your calendars for the same time on the second Tuesday of each month. You don't have to be live on the call -- all subscribers will receive a recording and all resource materials after the call.

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3 tips for when an audience member dominates Q&A

Speak Schmeak

How many times have you sat in the audience during the Q&A portion of a presentation (either live or on the Web or phone), and felt frustrated by one audience member dominating the questions? Unlike a true heckler , the person dominating Q&A is not trying to put you down or make you look bad.

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Speechwriters Conference Debrief 4 of 4: Q&A Session

Ian Griffin - Professionally Speaking

By listening to the Q&A you’ll hear comments and opinions about many aspects of the first day of the Ragan Speechwriters conference. In this fourth and final edited highlight from the Silicon Valley Speechwriters Roundtable call, we hear from the callers who had comments and questions. Helping me respond to callers questions is MasterCard VP Douglass Hatcher. By listening to the Q&A you’ll hear comments and opinions about many aspects of the first day of the Ragan [.]

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Guest post: 5 Tips for Conquering Q&A

Craig Strachan - Keep Talking!

“What Questions do you have for my answers?” – Henry Kissinger. When roles are reversed, and audience members are handed the microphone, many public speakers turn a brighter shade of purple. But this article will outline 5 practical steps for beating Question & Answer Sessions, and help you leave the stage as victor. But first, the preliminaries: Questions and Answer sessions have become routine with many forms of public speaking and will often be expected by a host.

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Answering Q&A questions and the path to wisdom…

More than PowerPoint...

Ah, Q&A. The “question and answer” portion of your presentation, where anything can happen! Instead of dealing with a Q&A hog , let’s say someone in your audience asks you a brilliant question. It’s timely and topical! It’s directly related to your content! At this point, your answer can fall into three categories. Hey, I know all about that! I don’t know, but I can find out. I don’t know. Each category comes with its own set of challenges. Let’s explore each.

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Creating the Speech for your Message - Q&A

Speak and Deliver

Follow up Facebook Live Q&A. Get your 30 minute consult by emailing me at rich.hopkins@gmail.com. Don't let 2019 go by without you finally getting your message on stage

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Will Your Q&A Session Make or Break Your Next Presentation?

DeFinis Communications

Most presentations benefit from a question-and-answer session (Q&A). Audience members appreciate this time to get clarification, share comments or ideas, and get deeper information on key concepts. However, because the Q&A feels less formal than the main presentation, many speakers neglect to prepare for this time. In reality, the Q&A requires just as much preparation as any other section of your talk. Following are seven tips for a successful Q&A. Encourage questions.

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Sign up now for Tuesday's Q&A call!

Speak Schmeak

Quick reminder: The next AskLisaB coaching Q&A call is January 11 -- have you submitted your question? If you'd like to know what the calls are like, you can get a free taste here. Sign up now to participate in the next call at 10 a.m. PST on Tuesday, January 11. Then mark your calendars for the same time on the second Tuesday of each month. You don't have to be live on the call -- all subscribers will receive a recording and all resource materials after the call.

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Twitter at Conferences: Beyond Q&A

Ian Griffin - Professionally Speaking

Twitter is increasingly used as a way of engaging the audience beyond the usual moderated Q&A session. Comments and questions are projected onscreen during a panel discussion. Here’s an example from the Silicon Valley Brand Forum where the event ended with a panel discussion. Comments and questions from the auditorium as well as people following along [.].

Q&A 130

Twitter at Conferences: Beyond Q&A

Ian Griffin - Professionally Speaking

Twitter is increasingly used as a way of engaging the audience beyond the usual moderated Q&A session. Comments and questions are projected onscreen during a panel discussion. Here’s an example from the Silicon Valley Brand Forum where the event ended with a panel discussion. Comments and questions from the auditorium as well as people following along [.].

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Next AskLisaB Q&A call is 12/14 -- and it's FREE!

Speak Schmeak

This Q&A-based subscription call-in program runs once a month and will address all your public speaking questions. You have questions? I have answers! My next AskLisaB Q&A call is Tuesday, December 14 at 10:00 a.m. PST , and it's FREE.

Q&A 130

Next AskLisaB Q&A call is 12/14 -- and it's FREE!

Speak Schmeak

This Q&A-based subscription call-in program runs once a month and will address all your public speaking questions. You have questions? I have answers! My next AskLisaB Q&A call is Tuesday, December 14 at 10:00 a.m. PST , and it's FREE.

Q&A 130

How long do you plan for Q&A?

More than PowerPoint...

Q&A — questions and answers — is my favorite part of any business or training presentation. I’m curious. I like hearing what’s going on in the heads of the audience. I like learning from the audience every bit as much as learning from the presenter.

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New MICE.net article: Q&A

Can You Hear Me Up the Back?

There’s a new issue of MICE.net magazine on the streets. This issue, my column questions the ancient convention of Q&A (the event kind, not the Tony Jones TV show that sends Twitter into hyperdrive). Sometimes, meetings are no place for democracy.

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Q&A Tips for Speakers – How to Turn Terror into Triumph

Inter-Activ Presenting and Influencing

I have noticed that many speakers dread the traditional Presentation Question Time slot at the end of their presentation. When I ask them why this is, the most common reasons given are: Fear of losing control. Fear of being asked difficult questions. Fear of not knowing the right answers.

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5-Question Q&A about the freelance writing business

Six-Figure Freelancer Blog

Recently I was interviewed about the freelance writing business. The information will not be available online, but I have posted here the questions I was asked and my answers to them. Marketing Your Services

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Twitter at Conferences: Beyond Q&A

Ian Griffin - Professionally Speaking

Twitter is increasingly used as a way of engaging the audience beyond the usual moderated Q&A session. Comments and questions are projected onscreen during a panel discussion. Here’s an example from the Silicon Valley Brand Forum where the event ended with a panel discussion. Comments and questions from the auditorium as well as people following along [.].

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Losing your fear of Q&A: 7 reframes and tactics

The Eloquent Woman

In the February webinar I did with the editors of Technically Speaking , I was taken aback when some of the participants--including one of the hosts--confessed that they plan to fill all the time allotted to ensure that there's no time for the part of the speech they dread the most: Questions and answers. I'm a staunch advocate of leaving time for audience questions. In my view, it should comprise fully half of the time allotted for your talk. Here's why: Audiences come to hear speakers and to contribute to the discussion. Nearly every person listening to you either came to the session with a question in mind, or has developed one after hearing you speak for just a few minutes--both good signs that you've chosen your topic well and are engaging them. Q&A paves the way for future speaking gigs, too. Leaving out question time can make the difference between good reviews and not getting asked to speak again. Think, too, of the reverse: For most speakers who do offer questions, the idea of no questions is seen as a type of public speaking failure. That's particularly true for public officials and political candidates, as we can see in Jeb Bush dubbing Hillary Clinton "scripted" for not taking questions. Nothing wrong with a script, by the way, and some formats or events just don't lend themselves to questions. But those who fear and avoid Q&A aren't worried about the type of event and have already moved past the logical arguments. Here's more perspective and a few tactics to practice so you can become a fully skilled public speaker who doesn't fear questions or leave them out: Understand that not every question is a challenge: This was news to many participants in our webinar, and I see academic researchers in particular assume that questions are challenges. Not so. Sometimes the questioner is just plain curious, or wants to hear you talk more on the topic. Check your reaction (see number 4 below) and try answering as if it were just a truly interested person asking. If you suspect there's more to it, ask a question back: If you think the questioner has an agenda or is testing you, ask a question back. "Tell me why you ask the question in just that way?" or "I've never had that question before. Tell me more about what you mean" are both great ways to learn more and buy some time to think. Determine whether it's a question or a statement: Some audience members rise to their feet to share facts, ideas, or perspectives as a way of adding to the conversation. You can respond simply by thanking them for sharing the information: "That is indeed a big issue, and I'm so glad you brought that to our attention. Thank you!" may be all you need. Respond, don't react: Take a cue from the world of media training and make sure that you are responding, not reacting, to questions. If your first reaction to a question is to get angry or critical of how stupid it is, you are not ready to answer in a non-anxious way. Work out your "I don't know" muscle: Many people feel they just can't admit not knowing something, and for them, Q&A is always going to be a problem. But if you can say "I don't know" when that's appropriate, you'll be a better and more credible speaker. Try out some clever ways to say it: "If I knew the answer to that, I'd be a millionaire!" or "I wish I knew that. We've been looking for that solution for a long time," are two good examples. If you're worried you won't know the answers, try planning your presentation so you leave out of it the information about which you're reasonably sure you will get questions. Leaving FAQs out of your talk lets the audience ask those questions naturally, and hey--you already know the answers. Lots of win for everyone. Plan for crickets: It's rare, in my experience, for audiences to have no questions. But you can look at What if nobody asks a question? for ways to prepare in advance for that problem, and at No, seriously: What if the room is silent during Q&A? for what to do in the moment. Mostly, you want to aim for a focused, mindful, and non-anxious stance during Q&A. Yes, you can! (Creative Commons licensed photo by UnLtd ) Got a panel coming up? Whether you're a conference organizer, speaker, or moderator, you'll have a better panel--and a sparkling discussion--if you plan with The Eloquent Woman's Guide to Moderating Panels. At just $3.99 in all ebook formats, it's like having a coach with whom you can prepare and bring on stage with you.

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3 tips for when an audience member dominates Q&A

Speak Schmeak

How many times have you sat in the audience during the Q&A portion of a presentation (either live or on the Web or phone), and felt frustrated by one audience member dominating the questions?

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When should speakers choose Q&A format versus a speech?

The Eloquent Woman

It''s commonplace now for speakers to be presented in an interview format--no formal remarks, just questions and answers with a moderator or interviewer. But is it an advantage? How do you weigh whether to agree to Q&A versus a formal speech?

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How not to conduct Q&A

Speak Schmeak

(For some reason, this video is no longer showing up, so you can find it here.) Talk about shooting yourself in the foot. How exactly is this an "excellent question?" Could he have waited any longer to express his "respect" for Senator Clinton? Could he perhaps NOT have laughed at the joke and instead defused the situation by insisting on respectful language?

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Have you submitted your questions for my next Q&A call?

Speak Schmeak

You have questions? I have answers! My next AskLisaB Q&A call is Tuesday, December 14 at 10:00 a.m. PST , and it's FREE. But sign up now , because those who get their questions in first get their questions answered first!

Q&A 130

Have you submitted your questions for my next Q&A call?

Speak Schmeak

You have questions? I have answers! My next AskLisaB Q&A call is Tuesday, December 14 at 10:00 a.m. PST , and it's FREE. But sign up now , because those who get their questions in first get their questions answered first!

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Graceful ways with Q&A

The Eloquent Woman

Two readers recently posed questions about what to do when your presentation veers off-track because of audience questions? Put another way: Is there any way to get the audience in line with your presentation? You'll need to float like a butterfly, not sting like a bee.

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Famous Speech Friday: Carol Burnett's live audience Q&A

The Eloquent Woman

Actress and comedian Carol Burnett, whose popular television variety show ended in 1978, is most well-known for her slapstick skits and performances, all played for laughs.

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“Public Speaking Expert Q&A”

Joan Detz Speaker Services

Bank of America has posted its interview with me: “Public Speaking Expert Q&A: Giving speeches that help grow your business.” ” The article appears in BoA’s online Small Business Community: [link].

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The passionate scientist: Doing Q&A like Neil deGrasse Tyson

Presentation Zen

Communication experts such as Jerry Weissman and Granville Toogood suggest that presentations should be delivered less like performances or speeches and much more like conversations.

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Reader Q&A: Over-preparing & last-minute speech changes

The Eloquent Woman

In the webinar I did last year with the editors of Tech Speak Digest, one participant said, "I've found that the closer the time comes to the talk, the more clouded my mind gets and I can't stop changing things and second guessing everything up to the very last minute, leaving me feeling completely unprepared even though I've spent hours preparing." I hear two problems here: Last-minute changes and over-preparing. British Labour party candidate Ed Miliband, who lost the recent UK election, learned the hard way what even one last-minute change could do. One of his advisers credits just that for getting the candidate off-track so much that he forgot to mention a key issue--the nation's deficit--in an important speech. A useful and rare description of how that happened appeared in The Guardian: On 23 September 2014, Ed Miliband prepared to take the stage at the Labour party conference in Manchester to deliver the most important speech of his career. But instead of rehearsing the speech he had memorised, he was being forced to concentrate on a new opening section, endorsing the proposal David Cameron had made that morning to join the US bombing of Isis in Iraq. “Stupidly, none of us had thought the late changes could have an impact on the quality of what he would deliver in the rest of the speech,” one of the advisers most involved in its writing recalled. “My sense is that looking back, it knocked him off course slightly. He started with the Isis passage, and it went over relatively poorly in the hall. He was off his game.” “What’s worse,” the adviser continued, “for the whole of the speech, he was improvising more than you might imagine. Ideas dropped from earlier drafts – such as a joke about being mistaken for Benedict Cumberbatch – suddenly reappeared. He was not quite sure in his head where he was, so when he got to the bit where the deficit should have been, he just started a different section. I remember immediately thinking ‘s**t’, but I thought perhaps he had shuffled it around because I had seen him do that before.” That describes the perfect storm of last-minute changes: You lose recent additions or important bits, and discarded but memorized lines come to to forefront of your mind, so you use them. When your talk is TED-like, delivered without notes and from memory, it's essential to "freeze" your script as final early in the process if you are to have any chance of success in remembering it. Changes made up until the last moment are the enemy of memorization. In my detailed guide to memorizing a talk , I noted that a good rule of thumb is to limit alterations once your script is "frozen" to the fix-it variety, correcting words you repeatedly stumble over or forget, but nothing else. This approach, of course, requires you to commit to your plan and your presentation up front, and allow yourself time for practice (and in my world, practice does not include editing if we can help it). What's really behind over-preparing and last-minute changes, most of the time? I think it's anticipatory stress, leading to an impossible-to-win effort to create the "perfect" presentation, the one that will answer all questions, cure all diseases, and prevent all naysayers from rising to their feet. Even more insidious, over-preparing is a constant reminder that you don't trust yourself to give a good talk, and there's nothing worse than undermining yourself, is there? When speakers are over-stressed and over-preparing is the result, I like to prompt them to put down the presentation and go out for a walk or run or yoga class or nap--anything to burn off some stress and get some perspective. I often ask over-preparers to try giving the presentation without so much preparation, and see whether anyone notices. Then we work some easy, evidence-based ways to calm your public-speaking nerves into practice sessions to keep stress at bay. And now is the time to grasp the difference between preparation and practice. Tell your brain to shut up and let you practice, wherein lies the real key to gaining confidence. If you've practiced--rather than revised--again and again before your talk, by the time you give it, you'll know how it will go. And what better confidence can you ask for? (Creative Commons licensed photo by the TED Conference )

2016 60

How to Have an Excellent Q&A Session During Your Presentation

SketchBubble

No matter how seasoned a speaker might be, the one thing that can usually strike fear and panic into just about anyone is the dreaded Q&A session. And it makes sense, because no matter how prepared you are for the rest of your presentation, the Q&A hands over that control to the audience members. Or […]. The post How to Have an Excellent Q&A Session During Your Presentation appeared first on SketchBubble Official Blog. Presentation Tips

2016 51

Awkward Silence during Q&A – Presentation Advice

TJ Walker Interactive

Don’t let a lack of questions during Q&A defeat you. TJ Walker, founder of The Pitching Well and Public Speaking consultant, offers some suggestions on what to do when you finish your financial pitch or business presentation and the audience doesn’t ask a question. For more advice on Public Speaking and Pitching check out [link]. For [.]. Pitching Public Speaking Skills Video pitching advice public speaking

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From the vault: Got lots to say? Save it for the Q&A

The Eloquent Woman

(Editor''s note: This 2010 post is a process I use for my own presentations: Start by planning the Q&A first, then work on your formal content. It''s a great way to look smart when question time rolls around.)

2015 93

How to stop a boorish Q&A Hog in 3 easy steps

More than PowerPoint...

I recently attended a terrific, high-powered panel presentation that unfortunately became hijacked by what I’ll call “a Q&A hog.” You’ve probably witnessed a Q&A hog in action at a conference or presentation.

Q&A 101

Reader Q&A: What if the audience already knows everything I have to say?

The Eloquent Woman

In the webinar I did earlier this year with the editors of Technically Speaking ( @techspeakdigest on Twitter) one participant said, "I am a junior developer.

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Got lots to say? Save it for the Q&A

The Eloquent Woman

Related posts: How to listen to audience questions Graceful ways with Q&A Are you a member of The Eloquent Woman on Facebook ?

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Are you ready for your next Q&A session?

Joan Detz Speaker Services

I just finished coaching a client for a big Q&A session. In particular, I focused on coaching the executive to improve his question-and-answer skills with international audiences. The a-ha moment for my speaker was: “Preparing for a Q&A takes at least as much work as preparing to give a major presentation.” Truer words were never […]. Career info International speakers Presentation skills

2016 40

more on handling difficult Q&A

The Eloquent Woman

We've been talking about ways to handle audience questions when they seem to push your presentation off-base, and here's a post from Sandy Kaye's Self Leadership Coaching Blog that furthers that discussion.

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When should speakers ask questions during Q&A? 6 options

The Eloquent Woman

You know the usual course of events: The speaker gives her presentation, there's applause, and then it's open for audience questions. But speakers don't have to limit themselves to the A in Q&A. In fact, I'd recommend judicious use of questions when these situations arise in news conferences, conference calls or standard presentations and speeches: To clarify a cryptic question: Let's face it: Most questions are brief efforts to encompass big issues.

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Video Q&A’s with Zen-master Garr Reynolds

Duarte Blog

Garr Reynolds popped by the office a bit ago, and we thought it’d be fun to answer a few of the most popular questions people ask. How do your methodologies apply to scientific or technical presentations? Read more about the presentation landscape. How many slides should I use?

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Super Q&A from Confessions webcast

Speaker Confessions

Did a webcast earlier this week to 500 folks about topics from Confessions. I went back in afterward and grabbed all the questions from the chat room during the talk and answered them all here. Lots of good stuff in there – it’s currently one of the most popular posts on my site

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Q&A with From Mountains of Ice author

Six-Figure Freelancer Blog

Q&A with Lorina Stephens, author of From Mountains of Ice 1. What inspired you to write this novel? That’s easy to answer: honour. More specifically, a man’s honour, what it means, how it defines a man, how it places him in his society. That probably sounds pretty esoteric, angels on the head of a pin thing, but [.].

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Audience Interaction is Easier Than You Think - Part III Q&A

Speak and Deliver

In Part I of this series, I talked about how to get Group Response. Part II covered Inter-Audience Interaction. Today I'll cover one of the biggest challenges a speaker faces - the dreaded Q&A - Questions & Answers. Speeches that involve Q&A are more common than you might imagine.

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