how to be a good moderator in a panel discussion

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( Log Out /  But do have a plan. ( Log Out /  Prompt the audience, if necessary. The audience will appreciate the moderator who catches this, and soon the moderator will be seen as the star of the show. Think carefully about whom to address it to! . Of course, the amount of conflict should be controlled, even though an escalation to physical conflict may make the panel a lot more memorable for the audience. Pace Management: the discussions need to feel like they easily flow from one topic to the next, without feeling awkward or forced. Unless you count the part when the audience gets to ask questions. Give the ground rules (“If this goes according to plan...”). If a panelist dominates the discussion, or a panelist doesn’t contribute enough, the audience is shortchanged, and things aren’t moderate anymore. ( Log Out /  Nexus 2007? Sometimes the moderator’s main job is to stay out of the way. Then you have the audience member who rambles on and on before reaching the question, assuming that they even have a question. Watch their videos. Thank you! Find out more about our moderators here. What have been the major pitfalls and successes? To succeed as a panel moderator, use the following ten tips. Watch the audience. Sure, there are times when it makes sense for the moderator to give an introductory presentation to help the audience have a basic understanding of the topic at hand, but it would do well for the moderator to remember that it should be introductory, and as brief and succinct as possible. Note: This document used to be the WisCon Moderator's Guide and Tip Sheet.However, it disappeared from the WisCon site some time ago. Anything in particular I should ask? Please also remind everyone to meet in the Green Room 15 minutes before the panel. We present these as examples for your consideration. We would love your feedback on this article. Who will add the most value to your event? You also need someone who knows the intricacies of the topic. A young man from China went to the microphone to ask Cory Ondrejka a question. You may choose to sit at the end of the row of panelists instead of in the middle—it will make it easier to keep an eye on everybody. The Anatomy of a Powerful Panel Discussion. This includes knowing when to ask the next questions, or get an alternative view, when to move to the next topic or when to draw on the audience for interaction. Either based on their innovative and insightful ideas, or based on their expertise (or a combination of factors), who is going to help your event the most. But unlike in a soccer game where the referee blows the whistle every time the ball crosses the white line, the moderator has a large gray area to work with. Or worse, scoring a goal. Kristin Arnold, professional panel moderator and high stakes meeting facilitator, shares her best practices for interactive, interesting, and engaging panel presentations. Read their testimonials and see if you can catch them in action. Though the entire point of a panel discussion involves the free flow of ideas, this can quickly get completely off track and out of control if not kept in check. If possible, arrange the tent cards yourself so the panelists are where you want them. The below version was converted to HTML by Jed Hartman; since this version is not an official WisCon publication, nor is it on the WisCon website, I removed specific references to WisCon and WisCon email addresses. “Excuse me, but we have wandered far afield...”, “That would be a good subject for another panel.”, “Excuse me, but we haven’t heard from [reticent panelist] in a while.”, “Let’s take a question from the audience.”, “In order to make the best possible use of our panelists, we’re only taking questions from the audience, not statements.”, “We’re only taking statements from the audience, not questions.”, “Oh, let’s not always see the same hands.”, “Thank you for your interesting suggestion. Hello? If a light bulb suddenly goes on over someone’s head, call on them quick before they forget the idea! Inquisitive: there is a reason that journalists, consultants, and analysts, make good moderators: they are great at asking questions and getting to the bottom of the responses. Repeat questions from the audience, especially if the room is large. Share your ideas with us here. Then there are panelists who talk too much, and those who contribute too little. The first questioner will set the tone for the panel. Out of the candidates you talked to, ask yourself: SpeakerHub makes finding the right moderator for your upcoming panel easier, by showcasing the right people with the right skills. It’s hard to catch panelists contradicting themselves, but it’s much easier to catch them contradicting one another, giving the moderator a chance to create conflict. The moderator’s role is to bring out a good discussion from the panel, and stay out of the way when it’s happening. The traditional opening is “Hello? 1. “Would if be a good idea for Singapore’s ruling political party to blog?” I might ask a panel discussing blogging in Singapore. Controversies. This happens more often than you might think. Throw out the first question. Here are some ideas on how to choose the right moderator. This is why having an effective panel moderator is so important. Maybe more than one. The below version was converted to HTML by Jed Hartman; since this version is not an official WisCon publication, nor is it on the WisCon website, I removed specific references to WisCon and WisCon … Make a list of potential moderators. Ask a different person to comment on another panelist’s answer. Be aware when a question or topic has run its course and be prepared to change direction. Once the introductions to the topic and the panelists are out of the way, the discussion proper commences. A good moderator must know how to firmly but politely remind the audience to get to the question quickly, and dismiss anything irrelevant. Some of the building blocks for a style can be found in the next section. Frame the Panel as … You can find all of our moderators here. Pick up your name cards and check with Green Room staff for any special information. Play devil’s advocate if things get dull. You may be right.”, “You’re making some rather broad generalizations.”, “Ok, ok, I think I understand the question. I agree that the moderation wasn’t done really well in most of the sessions at Nexus 2007. Specific references to WisCon were removed for this edition of the guide in 2008. Coleman, I will remember this for future moderator opportunities. The moderator is there to make sure the panelists, and more importantly their ideas, connect with the audience. Neither of these situations are ideal. Prepare in advance, but go with the flow. Giving each panelist enough airtime takes a lot of awareness and objectivity. Well, I guess this is both an art and a science. There are refreshments in the Green Room that participants can take to the panel. They need to have a touch of modesty, realizing they are there to guide the conversation - not to be the star of the show. Who are you most excited about working with? Have a talk with them, and look for the following aspects: Choose the right person. Play out the question, giving everybody a chance at it. But because some panelists dominate discussions, others don’t contribute much, and discussions tend to go off-topic, the panel moderator plays an important role. When Cory finally finished his reply, he asked the young man if he had anything else to ask, since he was still standing at the mic. Wait, did I just contradict myself about being the star? World of Speakers E.83: Todd Palmer | Transition from just improving revenue to improving lives, World of Speakers E.82: Eric Sim | From Keynote to E-note, 3 ways to make your complex topic more engaging, Captivate your webinar audience and create an engaging online event, Christine Sanni, Author - Public speaker, Creating a Healthy, High Performing Culture, Charles L. Holley - Trainer and instructor, Picking the right moderator for your panel discussion.

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