Handle a Heckler

gavelImagine you are in front of a group and you are discussing the importance of an issue.  Everything seems to be going well.  People are being receptive to what you are putting out there.  You see heads nodding up and down in agreement with the content you are presenting.  You start to feel good about the material and the way things are going, proud even.


All of the sudden someone in the back raises their hand and waits on you to recognize them.  You come to a natural stopping point and look in their direction.  You raise your eyebrows and point at them and wait for them to speak.


Bam!  They might as well have stood up and punched you in the mouth.  They’ve asked a question that is not only negative and goes against everything you just presented, but is very disrespectful.


For more get:

The Jerk Whisperer


The Jerk Whisperer – How to Keep Adults Acting Like Adults

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9 thoughts on “Handle a Heckler

  1. Good point Cranston. I have been on the lecture circuit in my profession for many years and have only had this happen a couple of times. One of the instance I told the party that because of limited time I would be glad to talk after the lecture. When I approached her she was not so tough. Possibly she had time to think between the time she interrupted me and when I went directly to her. I have attended lectures though when a “heckler” over powered the speaker and it was terrible. Your advice would have stopped this situation from happening. Have a great weekend 🙂

  2. Rajiv says:

    I have been challenged several times. Generally, I answer the question!

  3. This is definitely something I have to practise more and get better at, because I can tend to get intimidated by people’s negativity towards me. Thanks for the advice Cranston, it’s very helpful 🙂

  4. Nin Ashmore says:


    A soft answer turneth away wrath… When someone is nasty and mean it diffuses the antagonist to respond in this manner.

    Answering in kind generates an argument.

    A soft answer shows who is in control of their emotions.

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