🦗 How to avoid post-presentation Q & A crickets

“Does anyone have any questions… No? Errrr… 😬”

If there was one thing you could do to take your presentations to the next level this week, try this…

Always plan your Q & A Transition

The awkward moment when you finish your presentation and open the floor for audience questions, only for no one to have one. We've all been there, and it turns out Rishi Sunak has too…

Mastering the art of the Q&A transition is a critical skill that is all too often overlooked. Get it wrong like our Prime Minister did and all your hard work could unravel at the final moment.

Here are 4 simple ways to ensure you don't suffer the same fate as him:

  1. Pre-empt the Q&A 🙋
    Let them know there will be an opportunity to share thoughts and ask questions. This gives the audience time to think of something insightful to ask.

  2. Avoid an Abrupt Ending 🛑
    The last minute of your presentation should feel like... the last minute of your presentation! Do this by recapping ["If there's one thing I want you to remember, it is this..."] and impacting ["If we can get this right, then..."].

  3. Take the pressure out of your ask... 🧘
    'Does anyone have any questions?' Is a sure-fire way to make the audience feel like a rabbit in the headlights.

'Now feels like a good time to open up to the floor [pause]. I'd love to hear your thoughts or questions on anything I've shared today [or insert specific ask]. Where shall we start?'

Note the ‘where’ rather than ‘who’ - a simple trick to take the onus off the first person asking.

  1. If all else fails... plant a stooge 🌱!
    Ask someone you know who will be in the audience to have a question ready. A simple and risk-free way to get the Q&A flowing!

As for the video above, the silence wasn't coming from the press, it was coming from school children. What an amazing story it could have been for some of them had they felt comfortable enough to have put their hand up.

They would have had that for the rest of their lives - an opportunity missed methinks!

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