What about that, ahem, elephant over there?
In my experience most presenters dread Question & Answer period because they feel they are being grilled, put on the hot seat, or challenged.
The truth is a lively Q&A is the best indicator you’ve engaged your audience, given them something to think about and persuaded them that your idea is worthy of discussion.
So why dread the Q&A?
Usually, it’s because of the elephant. The one objection, hurdle or point of contention you know could prevent your idea from moving forward – that’s the elephant. If someone mentions the elephant surely it will kill your story, destroy your idea and your presentation will be a flop.
Not if you mention the elephant first.
For every Q&A, predict the questions you’ll be asked and rehearse your answers.
If there is an elephant, work it into your presentation and address it as logically and persuasively as you can. You have now neutralized its power and strengthened your idea.
Do this for every high stakes presentation and you’ll be a Q&A master. You might even start to enjoy it.