Is this slide really a good idea?

I see a lot of pitches and presentations where the end is a ‘Questions?’ slide. The speaker says, “So, does anyone have any questions?” And do you know what follows that? A rather awkward silence, sometimes.

Sometimes there are questions, but what I would say is: number of questions does not indicate the quality of your talk. It could be that the audience completely understood everything that you said, and that’s fine and you’re done.

However, the ‘questions?’ slide feels like a bit of a limp hobbling over the finish line. It doesn’t have that conclusive end. I want a nice, solid, impactful conclusion.

So please, when you get to the end of your pitch or presentation, I want a summing up: “So, the main things are this, this and this. This thing that I mentioned in the beginning, the theme, the very beginning, it’s happening because of this. It is this because of these things, remember?” And you sum up all the things you’ve talked about and then finish with that call to action: “So, go and do this thing. Go and visit this website. Go and talk to these people. Come talk to me afterwards.”

And then you finish with a very simple ‘thank you’. If any questions are going come after that, great, but if there aren’t any, it doesn’t matter either. So just finish with a nice strong ‘thank you’.

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