Do You Make This Mistake When Ending Your Presentations?

Has this ever happened to you? Gord (his name changed to protect the innocent) thinks his presentation is going well. His content is accurate. His delivery is passionate.

He just has to end his Question and Answer session with a bang to leave his audience feeling motivated. So he asks, “Are there any questions?”

Gord methodically answered every question, until there were no more questions left. By that time, the audience’s energy level had plummeted. All the “big” questions had been answered. The final questions were of limited interest and should have been dealt with one-on-one after the session.

With his audience staring at the floor, Gord ends his Question and Answer session by saying, “Well, if there are no more questions, thanks for attending.” People in the audience give token applause and flee the room.

Gord’s terrible ending damages his career. He looks weak and indecisive. His presentation fails to generate any enthusiasm for his cause.

Do not let this happen to you! If you end your presentation with a typical Question and Answer session, the energy will leak out of the room like air out of a burst balloon. What can you do to prevent this?

Well, it is better to intersperse questions throughout your presentation. But, if you have to leave questions until the end, use the following technique to guarantee you’ll end on a high note.

Say, “I’ll take a few questions. Then, I’ve got one final important story to share with you!”

Take questions from the audience. When the questions become less frequent, tell the audience, “I’ll take one more question. Then I need to tell you that final important story I promised.”

Make your final point a great story that propels them to take action. Motivate them to do something. Since your closing story is the last thing they hear, it makes a big impact.

Do not make the mistake of ending your presentation with a standard, boring Question and Answer period. Instead, use this technique to end your Question and Answer session with a bang, not a whimper!

© 2008 Reflective Keynotes Inc., Toronto, Canada