Tricks for Managing Q&A Sessions

As an experienced facilitator, I’ve found Q&A sessions to be one of the most powerful ways to uncover audience concerns, assess content understanding, and drive key points home. To maximize the impact of Q&A sessions, some recommendations from our expert ALG facilitators include:

  • Build the sessions into your training plan.  Place the sessions into your agenda once you’ve thoroughly discussed a concept to drive home key learnings and serve as a natural bridge to a break or your next topic.
  • Involve others. Can you include other experts or top management in your session to reinforce your content and add credibility to you and your topic?  For example, at ALG we’ve had success when we have invited senior leadership to share their own leadership point of views with the audience. This provides the participants with  an opportunity to learn from the experiences, and sometimes, the mistakes of a senior leader in their organization.
  • Anticipate and prepare.  If you plan to include executives or content experts, provide them with expected questions and a few bulleted responses to ensure they stay on point and sing from the same sheet music. They’ll love you for making them look great!  You’ll benefit from the same level of preparation if you’ll be the one handling audience questions.
  • Admit what you don’t know.  An audience can smell a fake a mile away.  If you don’t know an answer, admit it and add it to your “question parking lot” for future follow-up. The key to maintaining your credibility is to respond as promised.  The additional benefit – you’ll know the response for future Q&A sessions.

What are other tips you’ve found valuable when facilitating Q&A sessions?

Laura Soscia

About Laura Soscia

Laura Soscia is a nationally recognized expert in leadership development and co-founder of ALG, the Accelerated Leadership Group. Her complete bio is here

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