Powerful Panel Discussion Tip #108 with Joe Calloway: What to Do With a Panelist Who Won’t Shut Up

Professional Panel Moderator Kristin Arnold asks Joe Calloway, Business Keynote Speaker, panel moderator, and member of the US Speaker Hall of Fame to share his ideas on how he deals with a panelist who just won’t shut up during a panel discussion at a meeting, conference or convention.

Video Transcript

Kristin: Joe, what do you do with a panelist who just won’t shut up?

Joe: I simply interrupt. I just interrupt and I’ll say something like… it’s funny, I did this really recently and the guy’s personality was such I knew I could get away with doing it. I said- what was his name, it was Jerry or whatever- I said, “Jerry, hang on just a second. You know, I think we could talk about this all day. It’s obvious that you could talk about this all day, but we can’t. We want to move on.” And the thing is he was so excited about what he was saying and when I said, “It’s obvious you could talk about it all day,” the situation was such that not only did the audience laugh, he laughed. So, that was an easy one that I could interrupt. Other times, I’ll simply have to just say, “Kristin, I love what you’re talking about. I want to talk about it more. We’ve got to move on. So let me move to the next question.” You just interrupt them. You just cut them off and try to do it in as friendly and nice a way as you can, but I mean, the consequences if you let a panel get away from you, that can be tough.


Looking for More?

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!

Contact Us
Skip to content

Our privacy policy has been updated. By clicking, 'I agree,' you consent to the terms therein. I Agree