Prepare to answer tough questions
If you speak in public you will be asked tough questions. You won’t always know when the tough question will hit you but you know that it eventually will – so you might as well be prepared to handle it.
It’s a mistake to hope that they won’t ask you a tough question, and it’s a bigger mistake to believe that you can wing it.
The best way to answer tough questions is to prepare.
Use these three types of preparation:
First, list the obvious questions that your audience might ask. This might be about your price, experience, connections, history, risk or credibility.
Review each issue. Write and practise delivering your response.
Second, decide how you will deal with questions that are off topic, frivolous or a personal attack. Don’t react to an emotional attack. You don’t need to answer these questions but you need to respond calmly and confidently.
Third, prepare templates for how you will respond to the surprise, complex or vague questions.
For tough questions it’s best to have rehearsed some transition phrases that help you refocus attention on your main message and away from the tough question.
Here are a few examples of good transitions:
The key point is…
That leads to our next point which is…
The fact is…
Our real concern is…
The important question is…
The key point is that you will face tough questions and you must be prepared.George Torok was a shy student who learned how to speak in public. He has delivered over 1,000 professional presentations. He trains professionals, specialists and sales teams to deliver Superior Presentations. He coaches executives and leaders to deliver million dollar presentations. Visit www.SpeechCoachforExecutives.com or www.Torok.com © George Torok. You may reprint or quote this information as long as you quote the source and link back to this site. www.QuestionsAboutPublicSpeaking.com