Round tables – important mini events

27 Feb

When is an event not an event? When it’s a round table. For accounting purposes I never used to account for round table seminars as events – but they are. People come together, I need to prepare the content and the supporting material and most importantly of all I need to make sure that guests arrive on time and are ready to take part in something unique.

For a small and tight group it’s really important that everyone participates fully in the discussion. I always make sure everyone is comfortable and familiar with the other participants beforehand. It’s also really vital that they know it is being recorded for editorial purposes.

The prime purpose is to create a unique piece of content, but the gathering also has to work as an event in its own right, as if the coverage wasn’t a factor at all.

I’ve done three so far this year. The coverage of two has been included in a new directory I’ve been working on.

The coverage of the Thames Valley International Trade breakfast round table however was slightly different. It works quite well as a series of sound bites and quotes from those present, and I picked an angle about Chinese corporations looking at UK business assets.

Another important element is the photography. The above picture of me at a recent round table in Manchester is by David Lake who has a good eye for those key moments in a discussion when faces light up and the spark is there. Or, just a good contemplative portrait.

The news story of the Thames Valley event is here.

The round table web coverage is here.

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