How can a panel moderator develop the right skills to moderate a panel discussion at meetings, conferences, and conventions? Professional Panel Moderator Kristin Arnold asks Glenn Thayer, Master of Ceremonies and conference moderator to share his perspective.
Kristin: Glenn, how have you developed the skills required to moderate panels?
Glenn: Failing miserably many, many, many times. And going, “That didn’t work. Oh, that didn’t work.” I think that’s where it is. I think all of us as speakers, we run into that. It’s like how do you learn? You can hear horror story after horror story from the platform and you hear them but you don’t get it until you fall in your face a couple of times and go, “Oh, alright. That didn’t work. How can I make this better?” Really, when it comes down to me it’s how can I enjoy myself in this conversation. Really, I think that’s bottom-line. If I’m not going to enjoy myself and learn something from this panel, it’s a waste of time for me and it’s not going to be as beneficial for the audience. If I can be the moderator and go, “I’m going to leave with something here. I’m going to leave with a new perspective. Because of these people on stage and the questions I’m asking, I want to have some skin in the game. I want to know that I’m going to get something personally out of this.
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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!