Posted by: Emily Priebe | May 15, 2014

The Importance of Prepping the Right Questions

Like many others in this class, my job involves trying to craft the right questions. The importance of that was never more apparent than at conference that I just helped run in Orlando. Before each conference we gather insight from a number of people who will be attending the event using the interview technique. The interviews help us identify what would be most valuable for the attendees to hear at the conferences. It’s only through those interviews that we can really glean the topics that are the most salient to the group.

When we go onsite, we also have to be prepared with a contingency plan, which usually involves pulling together a panel with several of the executives that have been involved in the planning process. Typically, we never have to use these plans, but in this case we had a last minute speaker cancellation that prompted a race to fill the session with content. We knew attendees wanted to hear about developing critical skills in the industry. We were then able to pull together a panel with three powerhouse female executives about that topic, which had all three of them asking each other questions and throwing questions out to the audience.

Though the session was thrown together at the last minute, having prepped the right way led to the session being one of the most highly rated presentations of the day. It was the perfect convergence of circumstances that wouldn’t have happened without the right questions.

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