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Business Productivity Strategies for Success (Collection) by Daniel Silvert, Merrick Rosenberg, Mark I. Woods, Jerry Weissman, Martha I. Finney, Trapper Woods

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71. Bring Your Panel Discussion to Life

How to Herd Cats

The bestselling book Death by Meeting could readily have a sequel called Death by Panel Discussion. If you’ve attended just one conference in your life, whether it was business, professional, academic, or even social, you must be painfully aware of the soporific effect of panel discussions. The fault, however, lies not with the panelists, but most often with the moderator, who inevitably allows the panelists to pontificate, dawdle, or wander off into black holes, causing the audience to nod off.

At some point in your life, you may be asked to chair a panel. To bring your discussion to life, incorporate these ten best practices.

1. Invite conflict. Conflict is drama, Aristotle 101. In your ...

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