Tuesday, October 27, 2015

TechCrunch moderator and Facebook VP offer 'my favorite mistake' example

While it wasn't quite a panel, the on-stage interview of Facebook vice president Andrew Bosworth at TechCrunch Disrupt recently offered a great example of one of my favorite moderator topics: My favorite mistake.

Moderator Josh Constine framed it differently, asking whether Facebook owed users an apology, specifically page owners who'd bought "page like" ads. It was Bosworth who reframed it, answering, "I wish we could go back years and change the pitch we brought to advertisers. We really didn’t anticipate this feud with our own growth and the content that we put in the News Feed. There is good news here, though. If you look at the narrative, we have real business results."

It's a good example for speakers who feel put on the spot by an aggressive question, too. Reframe the situation, if you can, as your favorite mistake. It's an approach that enriches the answer and keeps you off the defensive. And on a panel, asking speakers to share their favorite mistake--one of their own--is a wonderful way to yield a surprising discussion.

(Creative Commons licensed photo by TechCrunch)

Need more coaching on how to be a better panel moderator? Order the new ebook The Eloquent Woman's Guide to Moderating Panels. At just $3.99 and available in many formats, it's a great back-pocket coach to take on stage with you in your smartphone or tablet. Find more tips on public speaking on The Eloquent Woman blog.