Rock the Q&A with Executive Presence

“Does anyone have any questions for my answers?” – Henry Kissinger

Executive presence is a term heard frequently at 2Connect. After all, the way you show up when presenting or facilitating has a huge impact on audience perception of you. How would you rate your executive presence?

During years spent working with clients looking to up their executive presence, we’ve seen Q&A sessions are often a career Achilles heel. Some presenters freeze up during Q&A, while others become defensive, or just seem to ramble.  All of which undermine executive presence.

Before your next Q&A, review the following tip to ensure you’re poised to gracefully and effectively answer any questions that come your way: Provide a Straight Answer

We operate in a world of “upside-down answers.”  We ask a question, and the presenter gives us all the data, every example, and every qualifier, BEFORE giving us the answer.  An upside-down answer looks and sounds like this:

Will your team meet the new deadline on this project?

“We are reallocating resources, shifting priorities and putting the best team on the project.  By doing this, we are trying to prevent what caused us to miss the first deadline.  Based on what we’ve been doing, we will not miss another deadline.”

The best presenters provide straight answers.  A straight answer begins with a short and direct response and is then supported by data and information as appropriate.

Will your team meet the new deadline on this project?

  • The short answer is yes, and let me explain why…
  • Bottom line, we will not miss another deadline and here is why…  

Transform the Q&A session from an Achilles heel into an opportunity to let your executive presence shine by consistently delivering straight answers.

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