DeviceScape Study Reveals More About WiFi
Lot's Of News Coming from Adhearsion

Panels Are For The Audience Not the Speakers

I've been moderating and participating in conference panels since my days in pro-sports management back in the 70s. Since the early days, I learned and never forgot the key reason to be up on stage that my mentors drilled into my head at a tender age (I was a just a teenager when I first got in front of a crowd of 1000 people to give my first solo speech).

The advice of a few centered around this:

Talk to the audience about what they would want to hear, not what you would want to say.

The second thing I learned from the same mentors was

Be on topic be sure you can talk about it if you're on a panel or being interviewed, otherwise either learn it quick or get someone more qualified on the topic.

I'm looking forward to my two panels at this coming week's IT Expo and 4G Wireless Evolution conference in Miami Beach as the timing couldn't be better.

Winds of change are in the air, and it's time to hear what's next, not worry so much about the past.


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Alan Reiter

Hi Andy,

I completely agree. I've always considered panelists "fodder" for the audience!

Unfortunately, too many moderators are suck-ups because they either are cut from the same corporate-cowardice cloth as the panelists or don't want to offend them by asking questions the audience really wants to hear.

I've been accused, with some truth, of being too nasty as a moderator. So several years ago I switched to being nicer, but no less aggressive in questioning panelists.

The worst format for a panel is typically where everyone presents PowerPoint slides, with little or no time for questions. The best format is typically no PowerPoints, with panelists answering questions directly from the moderator -- to get things started -- and then taking questions from the audience.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been saved. Comments are moderated and will not appear until approved by the author. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until the author has approved them.

Your Information

(Name is required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)