October 18

video: How to set up a room for a conference

event planning tip


Make sure people face the VIPS of your event: each other.

Event planning tip

How to set your room for interaction

many European conferences feel like a meeting of a historical communist party:

The chairs are put in a classroom or church setting, all facing a stage where the speakers sit behind a table. Luckily the table nowadays is replaced by comfortable chairs, but the principle remains the same: the audience faces a stage and is made spectators, not participants

For a theater show this is perfect: people can sit back and enjoy the show, performed by the important people on stage. They can even fall asleep without anybody noticing.

But for most conferences, this isn’t great. When i ask my clients what they want to achieve with their conference, mostly they say: we want people to interact, to engage in a real dialogue. To get to know each other, to facilitate networking.

Therefore it is much more productive to put your chairs in an interactive setting. Where people can face each other. Now your passive spectators become active participants. people can engage in a dialogue, speakers and audience are closer to each other and on the same level and a group feeling is created.

So, the right setup for the right outcome. This can be lower house, arena, U or stadium. As long as people face the VIPS of your event: each other.

About the author 

Rogier Elshout

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