1. Listen carefully to the question
& repeat it aloud - Make sure you understood the question
correctly & that your audience knows the question to which you are
2. Answer directly. Look directly
at the person asking the question - Give simple answers to
simple questions. If the question demands a lengthy reply, agree to
discuss it later with anyone interested.
3. Refer to your Speech
- Whenever possible, tie your answer to a point in your speech. Look
upon these questions as a way to reinforce & clarify your presentation.
4. Anticipate areas of questioning
- Prepare factual support material in three or four areas in which
you anticipate questions.
5. Be friendly, always keep your
temper - A cool presentation
creates an aura of confidence. When the questioner is hostile respond
as if he or she were a friend. Any attempt to "put down"
your questioner with sarcasm will immediately draw the audience's
sympathy to the questioner.
6. Always tell the truth -
If you try to bend the truth, you almost always will be caught. Play
it straight, even if your position is momentarily weakened.
7. Treat two questions from the
same person as two separate questions.
8. Don't place your hands on your
hips or point at the audience - These are scolding poses
and give you the appearance of preaching.
9. Keep things moving
- There is a rhythm to a good question-and-answer exchange. They volley
back & forth in a brisk manner. Keep your answers brief and to
the point with many members of the audience participating.
10. Conclude smartly -
Be prepared with some appropriate closing remarks. End with a summary
statement that wraps up the essential message you want them to remember.