Gentle Bamboo Solutions

Good questions deserve instant answers


In a corporate training session, sometimes a learner asks a question that I have already planned to cover in a while.

In the past, I used to respond like this: "Good question! I will be spending 15 mins on that topic immediately after the break. Please hang on till then, and I’ll answer your question in detail."

These days, I am a little more flexible. I tend to answer such questions immediately. I am even willing to move to that slide and change the order of my session for a more real-time interaction.

There are two main benefits to this approach:
1. The learner benefits more if a question gets answered when it is fresh in their mind. A delayed response reduces that impact.

2. A question has appeared in the mind of the learner at this specific point in the session. It is a sign for me (the educator) that I should have anticipated and answered the question before it arose. It is a sign to consider redesigning the session to make the learning that much more seamless.

(Once I answer the question, I return to the planned slide order. Eventually we reach the slide to which I had jumped ahead. I revise the point I made without spending a lot of time on it.)

We know that good questions deserve great answers. Good questions also deserve instant answers.

What do you do in these situations?

Right here, right now,