Like My Answer Now?Interacting with your students by asking or answering questions can and does make for a very dynamic training and learning environment, where everyone is learning directly or indirectly from your responses to the questions being asked. As a rule your students will come away from the class feeling good at being active part of the class.

Of course, we can say the opposite is also true too. There will be some in your students who will leave your class, feeling frustrated, confused, and/or upset at your response to their particular questions or the lack of, or because you didn't answer there question the way they wanted to hear it.

Just remember, depending on what method of instruction you are conducting, managing and answering questions from your students is very integral part of your training setting. Your students will quickly adapt to your style of teaching, by that I mean, if you ask a lot question during your class they have a tenancy to pay attention just a little closer to what you are discussing. On the other hand if you develop the habit of asking only a couple of question or no question per training session, they also quickly learn that too.

Someone said, there is no such thing as a "dumb question" only "dumb answers." unless you know otherwise always approach each question asked with a prompt response and with a correct answer, if you do not know the answers to the questions asked then "say so." Never, never discount or put down a person for asking questions.

When you make time during your presentation or training for questions and answers, these guidelines may be helpful to use when asking and answering question from your audience.

  • Always turn and face directly to the person asking the question, in some cases you may need too, repeat the question again. So everyone in the audience can hear it and benefit from the question and your answer.
  • In a situation where you are not immediately able to respond to the person asking the question do not ignore them. Make every effort possible to acknowledge that person and their question by acknowledgment either with a hand signal or with a nod of the head that you heard them.
  • If you do not know the answer to the question being asked then just say so! The worse thing you can do is to respond with off the wall answer.

Then there will be times when you think your students stay awake at nights, thinking up ways on how stump you with a question.

And, there is no question that sooner or later as a trainer you will cross paths with the type of questioner, who likes for whatever reasons, likes to sharp shoot the trainer with a series of predetermined questions or the know it all student. These individuals can sometimes be identified as those who have some prior training or experience in the material being taught. (Note for those reading this from the web, during the course we will discuss other methods in controlling these types of students.)  For now it's my opinion the best response to these types of individuals is to answer the question with a question, and finally if the questioning continues along the same path for a few minutes. You have to find a way to move on without letting them take control of the class.

They Have Long Ears Like This!Here is one suggestion you can use to move on without letting them control your presentation is too make a similar statement directly to them: " It appears that you have a great deal of knowledge on the (topic) at our next break or at the end, see me and I will make sure you have our list of study guides and book references we use, where you can find more information on the subject." Then immediately move to the next questioner or into your next topic. These sharpshooters are difficult to control at times. There is no real easy answer in controlling or handling the sharpshooter or the know it all's who will cross your path. The only way is to be prepared to answer any and all question with a quick and accurate answer and then move on. Let me say this also you need to use extreme caution in these circumstances like these, and whatever you do:

"Do not play mind games with them just move on as quickly as you can."

Remember it is your class you control it, do not let the questions being asked, and your responses take control away from you and your students learning environment.

During the course your instructor will go into greater details, for now, go to "Motivate Your Audience", or back to "Your Presentation Skills"


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