The question and answer session SHOULD BE the cherry on top of your presentation sundae. Everything else was good, but this will be the best part! That’s why you saved it until the end.
- You’ve been talking AT them for the past hour. This is a chance for dialogue and conversation.
- You could have sent them the slides. Impress them by answering their questions.
- A kindergartner could have memorized your slides. Q&A is your chance to SHINE!
For final presentation success, follow this guideline:
- Practice – It seems odd to think of practicing possible questions, but it helps to relax you. Ask others to listen to your presentation and ask them what they would ask.
- Allocate time – Let the audience know you have “15 minutes” or “time for 5 questions.” All other questions will be taken off-line after the presentation.
- Be direct – Take your time and answer their questions directly. Feel free to ask if that covered all of it. If not, let them know you’ll discuss it afterward.
And please do not tell everyone who asks a question, “That’s a good question.” Sadly, they are not always good questions.