Professional Panel Moderator Kristin Arnold asks Terry Brock, technology trends expert, virtual panel moderator, and member of the US Speaker Hall of Fame to share his perspective on who should manage the PowerPoint slides during virtual panel discussions  at meetings, conferences and conventions.

Kristin: In a virtual panel discussion, who manages the PowerPoint slides?

Terry: I think that if the panelist has it, I would have the panelist use that. To be able to try to switch back and forth could be a technical nightmare. You want one computer that’s doing it, have them put it on there. You might have the person come over and use that computer to do it, but if they really insist on they have slides, it would be very difficult, particularly if you’re bringing in the other people to have them shift back and forth. Now you can have them show some slides and share their screen, but I think someone needs to be able to be there so that you don’t have a person who might just want to grab the microphone and do their own sales pitch. You’ve got to be careful of that.

One of the nice things about Google Plus Hangout, it gives you the ability to blue line someone. For instance, if you’re speaking, I as the moderator can click on your picture; it puts a blue line around you and now your picture is up there on the screen. Otherwise, what happens is there is a noise in the background. Whoever has the loudest noise is up on the screen. If a Ray Beale comes on or a telephone rings in the background, you’re going to see the person who is just sitting there like this while the phone’s ringing in the background and another person talking won’t be seen on the screen. And so as the moderator, it’s good that you have one person who understands what to do and can control the nuts, bolts, and wiggle pins of how all of this comes together and works.

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Kristin Arnold, professional panel moderator, and high stakes meeting facilitator is on a crusade to make all panel discussions informative, interactive, and interesting.   Specifically, she wants to help YOU become a better panel moderator.  Why?  Because 95% of annual meetings have panel discussions – and according to the 2014 Panel Report, it’s a fifty-fifty proposition they are any good at all!  Expectations decrease dramatically when your attendees walk in and see the traditional draped head-table with microphones on short stands.  There are sooooo many other ways to have a stimulating conversation!  So let’s increase the probability of success for your next panel discussion with these resources.

And, you can always go back to the playlist for more Powerful Panel Discussion Tips!