A typical practice in keynote or executive speeches and town halls is the Q&A session.  I’ve got no problems with questions (and answers!) but I dislike watching a messaging session end with soliciting them.One I saw last week ended something like this:Exec: “Well, we have about 10 minutes, do you have any questions?”Silence.“Surely you have some questions.” (well maybe they don’t, boss, and don’t call me Shirley)Front Row Freddie asks a question.  Exec rambles for 5 minutes about things unrelated.  Returns to solicitation:“Any more questions?”  (silence)“What’s wrong with you folks?  I’m giving you a chance to ask me anything! “A rabbit trail chased.  Another plea:“We’ve got time for one more.  Anyone?”None asked.  So the statement:”I’m going to close then.  That’s all I have to say.“And 2 minutes 24 seconds later, he did, finally, quit.I’m not against Q&A.  Not even a time for Q&A.  But don’t end with it.  Folks who don’t have questions resent being held.  The time is usually dominated by a few folks, and the rest lose interest.  Quickly.  Therefor the lasting impression is not one associated with the message and call to action, but in a non-engaging degenerative slide to nothing.  In less formal settings (conferences) people begin to leave, and often the Q&A ends with just a few people (usually the ones asking questions).  Instead, put questions in the middle, or take them throughout.

End with a statement of value and action, not a waning interest in questions and answers.

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