An effective Live Q&A session is one that ends with both the host and the participants feeling like they covered everything they needed to cover, got the answers to their questions, and shared what they need to share.
Unfortunately, not all Q&A sessions are this effective, but there are certain steps you can take to make your next one even better.
Here are five ways to make Q&A sessions more effective.
1. Make sure you devote enough time to your Q&A session
If you only allot a 15-minute period for questions after an hour-long meeting, chances are you’ll find this isn’t enough time. Be sure to book a big enough time slot so you can give each question the attention it deserves. As a good rule of thumb, your Q&A session should be AT LEAST 25% of your total meeting time.
2. Collect questions before the event
It’s useful to let participants submit questions not only during but also before your Q&A session. This allows you to better sort the questions, prepare your answers, and eliminate any redundancies.
3. Think ahead
Try to anticipate what your audience might ask ahead of time. Not only can this help you be prepared to answer questions as they come up, but it also means you can cover these questions ahead of time so these questions don’t need to be asked in the first place.
4. Leverage anonymity
Particularly in big groups, audience members might be nervous to ask questions. Whenever possible, leverage anonymity so your audience can ask questions without their identity being shared with other participants.
5. Choose the best software
Leveraging anonymity leads perfectly into this point. With the right software on your side, you can enable anonymity features and so much more. When you collect questions electronically with software like Swift Polling, it also streamlines the process and results in a far more effective Q&A session.
Swift also provides Q&A moderators with the ability to filter out repetitive or offensive questions before they’re shared with the audience. You can also group questions ahead of time, or even save them later so you can follow up on them after the meeting.
If you notice certain questions or topics are brought up more than others, you can display your top questions with the audience. You might also give your audience the ability to up vote the displayed questions so they can demonstrate which ones are most important to them.
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