The end of the pandemic is finally in sight, and, once more, people feel secure and confident about attending in-person events. Be that as it may, the future of virtual roundtables is still looking bright. Experiences over the past two years have shown industry leaders that virtual events are a viable alternative, especially for their clients and customers thousands of miles away.
Now that 2022’s coming to a close, business leaders should continue developing new strategies for leveraging the virtual events space. Take a look at the trends and insights that emerged in this sphere over the past year.
Learning first, networking (a close) second
Decision-makers invited to attend virtual roundtables are mostly enticed to attend because these events are great platforms for building intellectual capital. Gaining vital insights from their peers is their primary objective in participating in these discussions.
Participants may also discover kindred entrepreneurial spirits among the group. Roundtable attendees may take the opportunity to link with other like-minded executives to expand their network or start meaningful business relationships with them.
“Gaining vital insights from their peers is their primary objective in participating in these discussions.”
Engaging in conversation
What sets a roundtable apart from other knowledge-sharing platforms is its conversational nature. However, virtual roundtable organisers must remember to keep their events interesting for their guests by engaging with them more creatively. This way, roundtable guests are sure to participate with greater enthusiasm, thus ensuring clearer and more comprehensive insights are shared during the event.
Sketchnoting is one of the best examples of interactive participation in roundtables. Through these real-time illustrations, attendees can organise their thoughts more efficiently, retain new information more effectively, and communicate ideas more clearly. To find out more about how sketchnotes boost engagement in virtual events, visit Ortus Draws and see how they do it.
Gaining a bird’s-eye view
While it may be lonely at the top, decision-makers have a clearer and wider view of everything that happens within their organisations—even their industries at large. Roundtable organisers have to keep this in mind during the guest selection process. Limiting invitations to top executives ensures that their discussions highlight the most comprehensive insights.
These knowledge-sharing experiences also enable business leaders to connect with like-minded peers who face similar challenges and opportunities. This results in the post-event genesis of lasting business relationships among forward-thinking leaders.
Discussing in (and through) moderation
Roundtable discussions led by just one or two participants will only leave the rest of the group wanting to be heard and wanting to hear more insights. Organisers can easily resolve this by tapping moderators to guide their events.
Effective moderators possess the ability to break the ice among roundtable participants and warmly encourage them to share their insights throughout the discussion. Knowledge about the topic at hand is a plus. You can find a more detailed guide to moderating virtual roundtables here.
Adding value with add-ons
Apart from a more conversational flow of ideas, virtual roundtables aren’t so different from any other virtual meeting. Organisers can inject a bit of fun into their live discussion events by delivering special add-on packages to their guests to enjoy during the roundtable.
From charcuterie boxes to wine- or whiskey-tasting kits, add-ons are sure to provide roundtable participants with a more memorable knowledge-sharing experience. Take a look at these highlights from The Ortus Club’s first chocolate-tasting tasting event. Their guests were treated with chocolate boxes specially curated by Malaysia’s Chocolate Concierge.