By Chuck Gallagher

Creating an effective prompt for ChatGPT or any chat-based AI tool is crucial for obtaining relevant and accurate responses. Here are 10 tips to help you craft the perfect prompt:

1. Be Clear and Specific

Clearly state your question or request. Avoid vague or ambiguous language that could lead to misinterpretation. For example, instead of asking, “Tell me about AI,” specify, “Explain the impact of AI on health care in the last five years.”

2. Provide Context

Briefly explain the background or context of your question. This helps ChatGPT understand the topic and generate a relevant response. For instance, “I’m writing a report on AI applications in law enforcement. How has AI been used in predictive policing?”

3. Use Complete Sentences

Write in complete sentences to ensure your prompt is well-formed and easily understandable. While incomplete sentences can still generate responses, complete sentences tend to lead to better understanding and thus, better results.

4. Ask Open-Ended Questions

Instead of yes/no questions, ask questions that encourage detailed and informative responses. For example, “What are the benefits and challenges of using AI in education?” rather than “Is AI used in education?”

5. Break Down Complex Questions

If your question is complex or multi-part, consider breaking it down into smaller, more manageable questions. For instance, “What are the ethical concerns of AI?” followed by “How can these concerns be addressed in healthcare?”

6. Specify Format or Style

If you have a preference for a specific format (e.g., list, explanation, analogy, table format) or writing style, mention it in your prompt. For example, “Provide a list of key benefits of AI in agriculture” or “Explain the concept of machine learning using an analogy.”

7. Provide Examples

If you are trying to emulate a particular style or structure, you can include the example right in your prompt. For example, “Write a summary similar to this example: [insert example].”

8. Use Personas

Ask ChatGPT to adopt a certain persona, such as a business coach, marketing expert, or a prosecutor. This helps set the context effectively for how it should respond. For example, “Pretend you are a business consultant and explain how startups can leverage AI.”

9. Set the Tone

If you have a specific tone or style in mind for the response (e.g., formal, casual, technical), communicate that in your prompt. For example, “Explain the concept of blockchain in a casual tone suitable for beginners.”

10. Iterate and Refine

It’s not necessarily the goal to get a perfect draft from a single prompt. Don’t hesitate to go back and forth with additional prompts to refine the output. Adjust the wording or provide additional details to improve the results. The more you practice writing prompts, the better you’ll get.


  • Be Clear and Specific: Avoid vague language.
  • Provide Context: Give background information.
  • Use Complete Sentences: Ensure clarity.
  • Ask Open-Ended Questions: Encourage detailed responses.
  • Break Down Complex Questions: Simplify multi-part queries.
  • Specify Format or Style: State your preferences.
  • Provide Examples: Show desired styles.
  • Use Personas: Set context with specific roles.
  • Set the Tone: Communicate the desired tone.
  • Iterate and Refine: Practice and adjust prompts.

By following these tips, you can enhance the quality of your interactions with ChatGPT 4o and obtain more useful and accurate responses.

If you’re interested in Chuck’s AI presentation for your next conference reach out and let’s have a conversation. Dates in late summer and fall are filling up so now’s the time to talk. Learn more here.

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