How to Handle Hecklers

Luckily, hecklers are few and far between, but if you speak regularly you might have to deal with them. Hecklers are usually inappropriate, some drunk or just playful, but you can still keep your cool and finish your presentation in control.

  • Stay Calm. No matter how you deal with a heckler you must stay calm and focused.
  • Ignore them. Many people usually ignore hecklers because it usually stops their behavior. Many people disrupt the speaker to get attention, so continue speaking as if nothing happened. Members of the audience might even speak up and ask the heckler to stop.
  • Ask them to stop. Simply, ask them to stop. Without paying too much attention to the situation, ask them to please stop, take a short pause and continue on.
  • Engage the Audience. Many professional speakers and performers will ignore the heckler and instead talk to the audience. You can make comments like “Is that annoying?” making the heckler embarrassed and stop.
  • Play with them. If you are quick on your toes, feel free to engage them into your conversation. This is tough, and can get you off track, but if you can pull them into an example you are trying to make you can easily win over the audience.
  • Call for action. If they are inappropriate, angry or drunk, you can always ask to have them removed.

Here is an example of what not to do with hecklers:


About releaseyourvoices

Release Your Voice with Pamela Hart: Public Speaking training based in Vancouver BC. We offer training seminars, oral presentation skills, corporate communication, private lessons or group training
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s