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9 Factors to Consider When Organizing Your Panel Discussion (1)

What do you do if you don’t have a clear vision for your panel? What if all you have known is the traditional style panel format, how would you even know what else is possible?

Here are nine factors to consider as you clarify your vision for your panel discussion:

  1. Formality – Formal to casual
  2. Discourse – polite to confrontational
  3. Tone – Serious to playful
  4. Purpose – Informational to persuasive
  5. Control – structured to unstructured
  6. Duration – Short (20 mins) to long (90 mins)
  7. Topical Focus – highly focused to more general discussion
  8. Audience Engagement – passive to active
  9. In-person, virtual, or hybrid

In the post-Covid world, most conferences offer virtual and hybrid options in addition to the traditional, in-person event. Keep in mind, that it is not necessary to have every panelist physically present in the same room. You can host a panel discussion that has a mix of in-person and virtual (or remote) participants.

Your answers to these questions will guide your subsequent thinking and planning for an amazing panel discussion!

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For more information about how to moderate a lively & informative panel discussion, check out our free 7-part video series on how to moderate a panel and other resources to help you organize, moderate, or be a panel member.

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Kristin ArnoldKristin Arnold
KRISTIN ARNOLD, MBA, CSP, CPF|Master has been facilitating meaningful conversations between executives and managers to make better decisions and achieve extraordinary results for 25+ years. She's a leading authority on moderating panel discussions and passionate about finding the perfect olive to complement a vodka martini.
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