9 ways to be an outstanding panelist

Though you’re sharing the stage and speaking time with several other presenters, talking on a panel can be tough. Here’s how you can come through with flying colors.

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Panelists also carry the burden of listening carefully to what their co-panelists are saying in order to form relevant responses, interjecting as appropriate to make sure their views get heard and packing a lot of value into a short speaking session.

Many presenting best practices also apply to panelists, but here are nine more considerations that can help you stand apart from those who are speaking on the same panel:

1. Figure out what your audience craves.

Prepare for your panel just as you would any other presentation. Clarify what might captivate your audience and come prepared with compelling support points.

Leadership author Kristi Hedges advises people to “practice your speaking part like a keynote” and says you should “think through a compelling opening and closing statement, prepare stories to share, [and] bring pithy anecdotes to spark discussion.”

2. Go back to your main messages.

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