A Match Made in Session Heaven: Compatibility Between Speakers and Moderators
You’ve done it! You crafted a unique session, conducted speaker research, and found a brilliant thought leader, a provocative thinker to present the session content, and now you need a moderator to guide the session and be a voice for the audience.
When pairing a speaker and moderator for a powerful session, you’re not only looking at their skillsets and where they excel, you’re looking at their personalities, more specifically how they react and can challenge each other… in ways that are beneficial to the session, of course.
Striking a delicate but effective balance can make or break a session. If you have an animated speaker and a mild moderator, it’s easy for the attendee to focus on the most effective part or person of the session, but at the same time, pinpoint who or where the session is lacking, and shift their impression and feedback to the latter.
So, what tools or assessments do we use to play matchmaker to our speakers and moderators? The tool is easy, affordable, and easily accessible; the tool is you. As the content creator, you crafted the session with people and outcomes in mind, so you are the most useful tool in the matchmaking process.
Review the three considerations below when you begin your matchmaking phase of session preparation.
- Use the differing characteristics of the speaker and moderator to bring out the best in both during the session. Attendees notice the moderator just as much as the speaker; especially the audience members in which the moderator is acting as a voice for them.
- While opposites can lead to idea sharing and healthy debates, research the backgrounds and values that both the speaker and moderator promote. In sessions you want thought provocation, not thought argumentation.
WILLINGNESS TO COLLABORATE
- There’s no such thing as being too prepared. Collaboration between speakers and moderators is a necessity for a smooth, successful session.
- Disjointed conversation or irrelevant questions can take a session off track and fast. Early collaboration between a speaker and moderator can accomplish two things: 1. Increase the comfort level of the speaker that all participating parties in the session are familiar with the topic and will be ready for the live session and 2. Reveal the communication styles of both the speaker and the moderator for more efficient collaboration.
- Understanding communication preferences is important when two or more people are working together on a session. For example, if the moderator is an over communicator, and the speaker only replies and sends content or feedback as necessary, the moderator won’t take the communication style as a slight or complication because they will have recognized the speaker’s communication style.
- Communication styles should be second to deadlines on the priority list. When deadlines are met, especially when it comes to submitting content, communication styles can be easily navigated.
As we’ve seen in all facets of life, matchmaking isn’t an exact science, it’s a feeling. Trust your gut while doing your due diligence and research for your speaker and moderator options. Not everyone will be a perfect match, but the effort you put into trying to find that dynamic duo or terrific trio will show in your session.
Interested in learning more about how beedance can assist with your hybrid, digital or parallel event strategy?