PodiumWise | Tips for advanced presentation skills

Many speakers compliment questions.  That’s a good question.  Their intent is to encourage questions.

Interestingly, such compliments can have the opposite effect.

Think of it this way.  If every question is declared good or great, the speaker comes across as insincere.

However, if some questions are complimented and some are not, then it starts sounding as if a subtle form of grading is going on.  Then, everyone in the audience who was hesitating to ask something will decide not to.  After all, they were already unsure of their question and now they get the sense that the speaker is judging the quality of questions.  The speaker ends up discouraging questions instead of encouraging them.

Sure, you can thank people for their questions.  But why not just go straight into answering?  A sincere effort to answer is the best affirmation of a questioner’s participation.

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