The presentation of your table topics questions is essential to avoid any confusion or doubt over the questions you are asking.

Be sure to read the questions loudly and clearly, paced slowly enough so your audience can ingest everything. For added anticipation, it is recommended you delegate a respondent after you have asked the question rather than at the beginning. This ensures everyone is on their toes whilst you’re reading the question. Once the respondent has finished, lead the applause (if you have decided to applaud after each response) and move on to the next question.

It is highly recommended you devise a list of people whom you wish to call on to answer questions, and place the names beside questions you feel are best suited to them. Ensure all Toastmasters who don’t have a role are asked first as well as willing guests, then if you need to fill more time; move on to Toastmasters with minor roles (Grammarian, Timekeeper, etc.) and if an emergency, call on evaluators, Toastmaster of the Evening, etc. Most importantly is to avoid the Table Topics Evaluator, and try to leave speakers alone as they are probably busy rehearsing their speeches.

It is very important to ask an experienced Toastmaster to reply first, as they will generally be able to demonstrate best how to respond to table topics questions. This is especially important if guests are present.

Conclude by thanking the respondents for participating, address the Toastmaster of the Evening and return to your seat.

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