How To Handle Audience Questions Effectively

For some reason, the prospect of having to answer audience questions fills many presenters with dread and fear. Looking at it in a positive way however, it's an ideal opportunity for you to satisfy the audience further, and you can continue to drive your main points home adding emphasis to your talk.

As with so many aspects of public speaking and presentations, the key is to be prepared. Make a list of all the logical questions that you are likely to receive, and think carefully about how you would answer each one in a satisfactory way.

When it comes to the moment after the talk where questions are invited, relax and stay in control.

As the question is asked, look the person in the eye and stay focused on them, nodding your head to show that you are listening. Respectfully wait until they have finished speaking, even if you know the answer mid-way through the question.

After each question is asked, thank the person, and if the rest of the audience did not hear the question, it is a kindness to repeat it so that everyone else is on the same page.

Take your time in answering questions. Don't feel rushed into giving an answer. If someone is trying to be awkward, continue to treat them respectfully. Never ridicule or be unkind to someone like that ? let them be the bad guy, not you.

Resist the temptation to give an answer if you are not sure. It's better to admit you don't know and offer to find out the answer and get back to the person, than to guess and possibly get it wrong.

Some people want to hog the question time, and will try to ask you a stream of questions. If the first few are easily answered within a reasonable time, then you might choose to go ahead and answer them, but if the person continues to ask more questions, you should tactfully invite them to speak to you afterwards, in order to give others the opportunity to ask questions.

If you are unsure about a confusing question, or you don't hear the person fully, don't be afraid to ask them to repeat it or clarify what they mean. Never guess! If you are still unsure, you might rephrase what you heard and ask them to confirm if that's what they were asking.

Lastly, learn from the questions you are asked. For example, if you find that you are commonly asked about something you know you covered in your presentation, you probably need to review that section to make it clearer in future presentations. Likewise, if there is a particular area of interest that consistently arises in questions, you may want to devote more time to that area in the future.

Paul Daniels is often described as The Johnny Carson of England. In his home country he is a household name due to his more than 20 years of prime-time TV shows that have been broadcast to 41 countries. Paul's course: The Stress Free Guide To Public Speaking and Presentations is the International best selling speaking course - visit: http://www.stressfreepublicspeaking.com for more information.

In The News:

Learn to Overcome the Fear of Public Speaking  EntrepreneurThe Complete Presentation and Public Speaking Course will have you wowing audiences in no time.
This $15 course makes public speaking a little less terrifying  The Next WebFor most of us, the fear of public speaking is just as real today as it was back in school when we had to stand up and give a presentation. Today, three out of four ...
Public speaking: 7 ways to master speechcraft  Big ThinkThe next speech you give doesn't have to be preceded by flop sweat and nervous leg-joggling. Based on the techniques of master orators, these 7 tactics can ...
Eight Things That Will Take The Stress Out Of Public Speaking  ForbesPublic speaking can be intimidating, but it doesn't have to be. Here's what you need to do to reduce the stress of speaking and deliver a compelling ...
Importance of public speaking, communication skills highlighted in Dibrugarh Toastmasters Club  The Sentinel AssamThe Charter of the Toastmasters Club of Dibrugarh, which is a part of the famed Toastmasters International, was held on Saturday.
Jay Robb: How you can face your fear of public speaking  TheSpec.comPublic speaking gets easier once you decide what your audience needs and then tell it like a story, writes Jay Robb.
From Salon Marketplace: Improve your public speaking with expert tips from pros  SalonThere are countless times you're asked to step up and speak publicly: whether you're delivering a presentation to your company, speaking at your best friend's ...
Public speaking conquered, Marystown teen Nitin Murugeswaran’s next goal is to become a doctor  Northern PenYou could say Nitin Murugeswaran has developed a pretty keen ear for accents. He's experienced four pretty distinct ones thus far.
Three tips to speak in public with confidence - The Jakarta Post  Jakarta PostMost people would agree that public speaking is hard. It's the fear of embarrassing yourself in front of strangers. You are likely to get those butterflies in your ...
Speak up: What it’s like to compete in public speaking competitions  RealAgriculturePublic speaking. For you 4-H-ers out there, you've probably competed in an agricultural-based public speaking competition before, whether it was to your ...
10 Public Speaking Lessons From Prime Minister Narendra Modi  EntrepreneurPrime Minister Narendra Damodardas Modi is an exceptional speaker and his speeches would make you a fan of his public speaking irrespective of your ...
How I Did It: Tips for Public Speaking  FenderBenderRenowned public speaker Kevin Brown, who gave the keynote address at the 2019 Fix Auto National Conference, offers advice for standing in front of an ...
Public speaking or a charging rhino? Sometimes, it’s a tough call  AZCentralIt's flattering when people ask me to speak at a gathering, but as the agreed-upon date closes in, my stomach starts to hurt.
Chinese students reach final of the International Public Speaking Competition  Telegraph.co.ukSponsored: The two Chinese participants impressed the judges and won plaudits from members of the audience for their eloquent speech and well-orated ...
4-H Clubs instill public speaking skills in youth of all ages through talks and demonstrations  Pontiac Daily LeaderWithin a 4-H club, youth annually give talks and demonstrations to their peers as part of their club involvement. Through these experiences, members gain ...
Overcoming the public-speaking jitters  theoklahoma100.comDo you run from speaking in public? Don't worry, you are not alone. Fear of public speaking is extremely common, but if you heed the following five tips, you will ...
'Men Seem To Dominate The Public Speaking Opportunities In My Industry - How Can I Put Myself Forward?'  GraziaIf every work conference you go to is dominated by men, how can you put yourself forward for public speaking?
Rising Star Brittany Samson: “Why we should make public speaking courses a larger part of the school curriculum”  Thrive GlobalMy own movement would be towards making public speaking courses a larger part of the school curriculum. I've worked as a high school speech and debate ...
CULTURE Practice makes perfect  The FlorentineItalians love to speak. They are naturally engaging conversationalists who can talk charismatically for hours if you let them. Why, then, does the spunk, ...
County 4-Hers share public speaking skills in contest  Seward County IndependentThe ability to express our thoughts and concerns through speaking is most often listed by 4-H alumni as a skill learned and gained while in 4-H.
Mastering the Art of Public Speaking: Being mentally prepared to deliver your speech  Caribbean News NowBy Spence M. Finlayson. Giving a speech requires a lot of things to be coordinated very well in order to execute a good speech. One of the primary things is that ...
Public Speaking, My Greatest Challenge – Maryam  Leadership NewspaperPublic Speaking, My Greatest Challenge – Maryam Maryam Garba is a 31-year-old feminist advocate, who is passionate about educating women on the use of ...
Trenton FFA member receives award at Missouri FFA Public Speaking Academy  kttnA member of the Trenton FFA Chapter recently received an award for being a finalist at the Missouri FFA Public Speaking Academy on the University of Central ...
Public speaking skills every lawyer should master  ABA JournalFor every lawyer who thinks they have oral presentations down pat, there's another who has anxiety about talking in front of a crowd. And they both need help.
Video: Secrets for overcoming your fear of public speaking  Greater Baton Rouge Business ReportIn this inaugural video for The Network, leadership keynote speaker and executive coach Dima Ghawi shares secrets for overcoming a fear of public speaking.
Lexi Bainas column: Public speaking, woodwork, and a chance to meet a Cuban baseball team  Lake Cowichan GazetteValley Rotarians are celebrating the finalists in this year's Hector McIntosh competition.
Public Speaking Reloaded: Chatham Hosts TED Talk Friday  Chatham, NJ PatchPublic Speaking Reloaded: Chatham Hosts TED Talk - Chatham, NJ - Chatham students will be showcasing their collaborative efforts with staff and community ...
Mastering Public Speaking & Presentation for Young Entrepreneurs  EntrepreneurThe world of business has always been cut-throat. Today, however, the scenario is even more competitive than before. With entrepreneurs innovating, and ...
My Journey From Nonverbal Autism to Public Speaking  Yahoo LifestyleKerry Magro shares how he went from a child with nonverbal autism that was seen as severe to a highly verbal professional public speaker.
If you have an interest in public speaking, community involvement, travel, sport or just in socialising - then Macra Na Feirme is for you!  Leitrim ObserverMacra na Feirme is a rural youth organisation for 17-35-year-olds. In Leitrim there are three very vibrant and busy clubs looking for new members. If you have a...
Public speaking skills boost confidence, bolster bank balance for North Canterbury businessman  Stuff.co.nzStarting out in business as an 18-year-old with a stutter, Michael Heaven had his fair share of obstacles to overcome.
Imparting confidence  Deccan ChronicleGayathri Rashmi Nair, who loves experimenting with her talent, is a public speaker, debater, writer, storyteller and more.
Tropicana public speaking contest winners announced  Holmes County Times AdvertiserCHIPLEY - Washington County 4-H recently hosted its annual public speaking contest. First place winners of the contest won a full scholarship to attend 4-H ...
How to raise your income by overcoming fears of public speaking  Business in VancouverAre you avoiding public speaking? If so, you could be hindering your ability to earn more. Harvey Coleman, business consultant and author of Empowering ...
4 Tips for Getting Over Your Fear of Public Speaking  Exhale LifestyleHave you ever had that dream? You know, the one where you are standing in front of a room full of people and you realize you're not wearing pants? According ...
Storytelling Festival rewards public speaking, creativity  MPNnow.comStudents at Midlakes intermediate School recently shared unique and creative tales during the three-day Storytelling Festival.The 19th annual festival saw ...
SUNY Ulster to host Public Speaking Competition | Local News  The Daily FreemanSTONE RIDGE, N.Y. — Kingston High School students will compete in the 10th annual Anita Williams Peck Public Speaking Competition on at 7 p.m. on June ...
Mastering the art of public speaking with Felix Zinhara  Bulawayo24 NewsStanding in front of people and delivering a speech, keynote address be it at a social gathering or professional setting remains equally "life-threatening" even...
Local youth compete in 4-H public speaking contests  MyEasternShoreMDDENTON — Caroline County 4-H members recently participated in county and regional 4-H public speaking contests, and one moved on to compete at the State ...
‘I was kicked out of school, but now I’m a motivational speaker’  The GuardianCordell Jeffers, 27, on how he set up his own business despite a rocky start in life.
Queens students sweep top prizes in Diocese of Brooklyn's annual public speaking contest  QNS.comThree Queens Catholic school students took home the top prizes in a public speaking competition hosted by the Diocese of Brooklyn. Eighteen students from ...
Port Jervis public speaking policy still under review  Mid-Hudson NewsPORT JERVIS – A reworking of the policy on public comment at common council meetings will wait a bit longer. in the City of Port Jervis. Fourth Ward ...
Speak Bengali to live in Bengal: Mamata  Deccan HeraldChief Minister Mamata Banerjee Friday insisted that those living in West Bengal will have to learn to speak in Bengali as she accused the BJP of targeting ...
Gunnedah Eisteddfod: speech, drama and public speaking  Namoi Valley IndependentOur first gallery of this week's speech, drama and public speaking section.
Amanda Knox in Italy: ‘I Am Not a Monster’  The New York TimesMODENA, Italy — When Amanda Knox, the American whose murder trial had riveted the world, landed at Linate Airport in Milan on Thursday, she immediately ...
Delta students shine at French public speaking provincials  Cloverdale ReporterTwelve local students competed in the B.C. finals for the annual Concours D'Art Oratoire on May 4.
Far west CWA public speaking results  Narromine NewsSixteen schools from across the region have come together for the CWA Far Western Group public speaking event held in Narromine on May 28. Together 45 ...
Jamaican takes Caribbean Champion of Public Speaking title  Jamaica GleanerJamaica's National Champion of Public Speaking and president-elect for Sagicor Life Jamaica Toastmasters Club, Faith Ellis, walked away with the title ...
Columbine shooting survivor Austin Eubanks died of a heroin overdose  CNNColumbine survivor and addiction speaker Austin Eubanks died of "acute heroin toxicity," the coroner's office has confirmed.
CWA Central Western Group's public speaking competition took place at James Sheahan  Central Western DailyTalented talkers took part in the CWA Central Western Group's annual public speaking competition at James Sheahan Catholic High School on Tuesday.
T.M. Krishna on Girish Karnad and his creative space  The HinduIn Karnad's imagination there were no boundaries, his pursuit of art and truth had an unfailing honesty.
4G leaders will work with Singaporeans to design, implement public policies: DPM Heng  CNADPM Heng Swee Keat said on Saturday (Jun 15) that Singapore's 4G leaders will partner Singaporeans to design and implement public policies. Speaking at a ...
Master the Art of Public Speaking for Less Than $20  EntrepreneurIf you've ever been recruited to deliver a public speech, someone likely gave you a particular tip before you got behind the podium: Picture your audience in their ...
Afraid of public speaking? This is what the experts say  The GuardianFrom 'pitch coaches' to TED talkers, there's an industry of self-help books about public speaking. What can we learn from the professionals?
Austin Eubanks, Columbine Shooting Survivor and Public Speaker, Died of Apparent Overdose  PEOPLE.comEubanks was a 17-year-old student at Columbine High when two fellow students entered the school and began shooting people in a reign of terror that left 13 ...
How Jewish day schools are now minting future engineers  JTA NewsWhen California experienced one of its worst-ever wildfire seasons last fall, New Jersey high school student Orlee Sadinoff watched from afar with grave dismay ...
Challenge, curiosity, character: lessons from fathers  The AtlanticOn this date 11 years ago, which was Father's Day in 2008, I posted a tribute to my own father, who was then in the final months of his extraordinary life.
Eight Basic Public Speaking Tips  EntrepreneurIf you want to supercharge your professional life, practice these basic tips before you move into more complicated public speaking techniques.
Stephenson County Fair kicks off with public speaking, demonstration contest  Rockford Register StarFREEPORT — The Stephenson County Fair recently kicked off with the Communications: Public Speaking & Demonstrations early show.Five participants gave ...
How I overcame my fear of public speaking – and learned to love it  The GuardianI used to get palpitations at the mere thought of going on stage. But it was taking a teaching job that gave me the confidence to face any crowd.
Conquer Your Fear Of Public Speaking With These 5 Tips  ForbesPublic speaking is the single most difficult task in many people's professional lives, but it doesn't necessarily have to be this way. Use these five practical tips to ...
Speak up, fear not  The HinduWhat is it about public speaking that scares one? It is perhaps, the fear of standing up alone in front of a group of people who sit comfortably together?
What can make a good public speaker truly great?  RaconteurSpeaker no-nos: text-filled slides, poor preparation, and a lack of personality. So what do the experts think makes a great speaker?
Hong Kong Protests: Huge Turnout Keeps Heat on City’s Leader  The New York TimesA protest attended by a surprisingly large number of people culminated with demonstrators converging on the streets and grounds of Hong Kong's Legislative ...
I was not booed, I cried for Uhuru, says Sabina Chege  Daily NationMurang'a County Woman Rep Sabina Chege has refuted claims that she was booed on Friday during the Embrace rally at Kimorori grounds, saying she only ...
3 Powerful Public Speaking Tips (60-Second Video)  EntrepreneurThe ability to speak to a group is vital for any entrepreneur. Simon Sinek, one of the most-watched TED Talks presenters of all time, offers these tips for delivering ...
Bernie Sanders Calls His Brand of Socialism a Pathway to Beating Trump  The New York TimesMr. Sanders, who is being portrayed as too extreme by President Trump, presented a forceful case for his brand of socialism through a framework of economic ...
Three Of The Biggest Mistakes Made When It Comes To Public Speaking  EntrepreneurRichard Dean is the author of Crowdpleaser: The 100 Greatest Public Speaking Tips of All Time, from Socrates to Steve Jobs. Published by Emerging Markets ...
Public Speaking Doesn't Have To Be So Scary  ForbesDiscover how to overcome your fear of speaking in front of a crowd.
Don't Wait For A Keynote To Invest In Public Speaking Training  EntrepreneurAfter launching my communication strategy firm, I continue to be shocked at clients reaching out a week before their big keynote to get help with public speaking.
Public speaking: is the push to make students employable going too far?  The GuardianAssessed presentations on courses from physics to philosophy are traumatising vulnerable students.
Improve Your Public Speaking Skills in Just Two Hours, And for Less Than $20  EntrepreneurWhen you think about it, public speaking is a lot like dying: everyone dreads the inevitable moment they have to do it themselves. Sure, it's not as scary as sharks ...
Here's How To Get Better At Public Speaking  ForbesWhether you give a presentation at work or appear in interview with a group of people, you will have to do some form of public speaking at some point in your life ...
How to Speak in Public - A Year of Living Better Guides  New York TimesDoes the thought of speaking in public make your pulse quicken? We've broken down the art of public speaking to make it less overwhelming and a more ...
10 public speaking tips that really work – not just for startup pitches  EU-StartupsPublic speaking can be a frightening task, and maybe you are one of the many that simply avoids it. Speaking in public is a broad topic that is not limited only to ...
Three simple ways to cure your dread of public speaking  LivemintPublic speaking is so stressful for so many people that it is routinely used as a stress manipulation in psychological studies.
10 tips to improve your public speaking skills  Accounting TodayDo you suffer from glossophobia? You may be unfamiliar with the term, but if you're one of the 25 percent of Americans who have a fear of public speaking, you ...
What I Learned About Public Speaking From Starting My First Speaking Tour  EntrepreneurJust two months ago, I kicked off something I've never done before: a speaking tour. Based on my book Her Big Idea, my talk wrestles with big questions ...
Public Speaking Is No Longer a 'Soft Skill.' It's Your Key to Success in Any Field  Inc.Great persuaders have a competitive edge in the age of ideas.
Portland city attorney Tracy Reeve returns award for not speaking up about racist remark  OregonLiveTracy Reeve, the Portland city attorney, has returned a professionalism award to the Multnomah Bar Association after one of her deputies made a racist remark ...
Coaching Professionals Bust 13 Common Public Speaking Myths  ForbesMany people are nervous about public speaking, especially if they don't have much experience. However, following the wrong tips can make your presentation ...
Warren Buffett Took a Public-Speaking Course, and So Should You  EntrepreneurOne expert-led course is currently on sale in the Entrepreneur Store for less than $20.
The race to be the UK's next prime minister is a fiscal free-for-all  QuartzThe UK Conservative party, which has been running the government since 2010, seems ready to reverse one of the defining traits of its tenure, fiscal austerity, ...
How to Conquer Your Fear of Public Speaking  Business News DailyPublic speaking is a nerve-wracking endeavor for many people. These tips will help you conquer your fear of public speaking and head into that presentation ...
Hate public speaking? These affordable online classes can help squash your nerves.  MashableTake a baby step into the world of public speaking with these online courses.
Conquer Your Fear of Public Speaking for Less Than $20  EntrepreneurLearn how to engage audiences of all sizes with tips from a bestselling author and veteran actress.
Seven Ways To Make Public Speaking Less Scary (And More Profitable)  ForbesPublic speaking can be daunting, but in the business world, it's invaluable. It enhances your standing as a leader, inside and outside your company.
How To Overcome Public Speaking Anxiety  ForbesTo attract high-paying clients, the number one strategy is public speaking. Therefore, it pays to find ways to overcome the natural fear of public speaking.
What Public Speaking Coaches Often Get Wrong  ForbesWe know public speaking is many individuals' greatest fear. And when people think of public speaking coaches, they often think of someone who will help them ...
Wringing the Fear out of Public Speaking  EntrepreneurI am a public speaker and a book author. Many times, when traveling on business, I meet people on planes who, finding out what I do, say, “Oh, I could never do ...
Suzy Welch: The fool-proof public speaking tip that will make you sound like a pro  CNBCPublic speaking can be frustrating, anxiety-producing, or, for some, downright terrifying. Bestselling management author and CNBC contributor Suzy Welch ...
These are the 4 reasons you suck at public speaking (and how to fix them)  Fast CompanyFrom not knowing your audience to rehearsing too much, chances are if public speaking makes you nervous you are likely making some of these mistakes.
Swords speechmakers toasting their success at Norwich contest  Fingal IndependentWowing a British audience with their public speaking skills recently were three Toastmasters from the Swords who travelled to compete in a major competition ...
6 Ways to Grow Your Public Speaking Business  EntrepreneurInternationally renowned keynote speaker Adam Smiley Poswolsky shares his advice on growing a public speaking profile.
How Public Speaking Can Help You Find Your Own Meaning  ForbesFind meaning and you'll find happiness. The road may be difficult, but the destination is success.
Simple, Effective Public Speaking Tips for Engineers  IEEE SpectrumTHE INSTITUTEThere are few skills that can help you climb the career ladder faster than the ability to speak well in public. Senior management is always on the ...
The Many Ways Public Speaking Increases Your Visibility  ForbesThe next time you consider an invitation to speak, don't stop at the size of the room when you think about your potential audience. The potential scope and ...
11 Tricks To Calm Your Nerves And Crush Your Public Speaking Gig  ForbesMembers of Young Entrepreneur Council share their experience and strategies for calming your nerves before a big pitch or presentation.
Giving a Speech? 6 Tips to Wow Your Audience  FortunePlanning to speak to a group at work or a conference? Here are six tips for hitting it out of the park.
Jo Brand sparks fury speaking on Radio 4 about hurling acid at politicians  Irish MirrorJo Brand, 61, suggested protesters should throw acid instead of milkshakes at right wing politicians.

Timing - Why You Should Never Go Overtime with Your Presentation or Speech

In a conference setting, nothing annoys audiences more than talks... Read More

Speech Making - Reasons Why People Dont Listen

Making a speech seems simple. You speak, others listen. However... Read More

What is YOUR Speaking Expertise?

Why do you have to be an expert when getting... Read More

Public Speaking:10 Simple Steps to Confident Speaking

1.Preparation The most important step in public speaking is... Read More

15 Ways To Keep Your Speaking Inspiring and Creative

When stressed or blocked it is wise to make a... Read More

Performance Feedback: Why Were Scared and How Not to Be

Effective communication is not a one-way street. It involves an... Read More

Public Speaking Tips

1. No speech is ever perfect. Perfectionism creates more fear.... Read More

Pay Attention To Your Appearance!

During the coffee break of one conference I attended, whispers... Read More

Poised for Success: How Developing Self-Awareness Can Improve Your Presentations

There are a number of factors that determine how your... Read More

How to Answer Questions Your Audience Will Ask

In elementary school, most of us asked questions which were... Read More

Speech Tips - Ten Things to Remember When Accepting an Award

Many people are recognised for their work, industry, sporting or... Read More

Earn Your Cs as A Speaker

Franklin Delano Roosevelt had some good advice for the public... Read More

How To Handle Audience Questions Effectively

For some reason, the prospect of having to answer audience... Read More

Fear!

I am terrified of heights. The thought of skydiving, for... Read More

The Ps and Qs of Public Speaking

Avoid the painWhich would you prefer - root canal dental... Read More

Conquer Presentation Anxiety: Olympic Athletes Show Us How

Whether going for the gold or giving a presentation, the... Read More

10 Tips for Better -- and Less Scary! -- Public Speaking

The fear of speaking in public is well-documented, often discussed,... Read More

Public Speaking Tips: The More You Know, The More It Will Flow - Tips For Knowing Your Audience

The more you know about your audience, the better your... Read More

How to Prepare your Mind/Body to Give Great Speeches

Sure you have catecholamines ? all speakers do. (including Sir... Read More

Dont Judge an Audience by its Stare

Don't Prejudge A Situation: In the areas of emotions and... Read More

Speaking On Your Feet

Your ability to communicate effectively will account for most of... Read More

Speaker Partnership Offers Trade Show Value

Want to gain added exposure at a trade show? Consider... Read More

Talk May Be Cheap but Your Speech Should Be Priceless!

Take a moment and imagine if you will any one... Read More

How To Use Microphones

Microphones are designed to help your voice, not replace it.... Read More

How to Gracefully Leave After a Seminar or Speech When Someone is Hogging Your Time!

Meeting planners know the value of meticulous planning. They are... Read More