As a public speaker, you should always expect questions from your audience, during your presentation. They will always want to ask questions, so you should be ready for any issue. Even if they are not willing to ask questions, you should encourage them to speak forward.  The question your audience asks can be the trigging point in your presentation that encourages, propels, or moves your audience to think about or do what you are proposing.

Most questions asked by your audience are often attached to their wants and needs, so answering them creates trust, and your reputation will be built and well kept. Questions are essential to your success as a public speaker, so you need to be well prepared for any questions asked to you.  Simply having an answer to an issue raised is not enough, it is also important that you know how to handle each question with authority and authenticity.

There are different ways to handle questions effectively during your presentations and working on them will make you that unique and compelling speaker everybody wants to hear.

Be prepared

Proper preparation is one of the most important ways to handle any question coming from your audience. Be prepared, list and practice answering all possible questions. Most importantly practice and prepare well for the worst questions. Have you ever imagined yourself being asked a killer question? How will you feel? How will you handle it? You should practice every possible scenario. If you craft and rehearse all answers very well, you will appear confident, smile and respond calmly to questions.

Make the rules     

You should be the one making the rules on when you will be ready to take questions and on how individuals will be recognized to speak. It might look complicated to do, but your audience is also waiting for you to state the rules on when to ask questions so that they can prepare their mind and ask questions that bother their mind.

Admit that you can’t know all

As the saying goes “No one knows all” and your audience knows this, so they are not expecting you to know all but just to give them the best of what you know. If you are asked a question, and you don’t know the answers to it, you should not try to play smart. You can just answer the question by saying “I don’t know the answer but you can give me your contact, I will get back to you.” You should also note that you can’t ignore more than 2- 3 questions or else you will be tagged “the unprepared speaker” by your audience.

In cases where one or few of your audiences disagrees with what you say or your answer, you should respect their opinions.

Master the different ways to handle questions and you will see how successful your presentation will be.

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