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Daily Buzz: Don’t Let Status Limit Attendees’ Event Experience

Your conference might assign certain status roles to attendees

Meetings are meant to be enjoyed by all who attend, but if yours involves a set hierarchy that portrays some attendees as more important than others, you’re probably limiting attendees’ experience.

Adrian Segar, a meetings designer and facilitator, defines status at events as “the relative levels of proclaimed or perceived social value assigned to or assumed by attendees.” He describes two types: old-school and real-time.

At a meeting with old-school status, “someone’s status is determined before the event by whether they’re speaking and the context,” he writes. “If you’re not speaking or leading a session you’re low status. In addition, keynoting is higher status than leading a breakout session. Program committees bestow old-school status. It’s public, and attendees have no say in the decision.”

Real-time status is about appreciating what each individual attendee contributes in different situations. “Unlike old-school status, real-time status is unique to and for each attendee, fluid, and context-sensitive,” Segar says. An attendee’s status changes depending on the interaction they’re involved in in the moment.

“Conferences that de-emphasize old-school status and support real-time status make it acceptable and encouraged for participants to define for themselves the issues, topics, connections, and interactions they want and need,” he says. “As a result, they waste less valuable time listening to speakers talking about uninteresting topics. They make more useful connections than at an old-school-status event. And they are more likely to be satisfied by their experience and, therefore, attend future events.”

Please select this link to read the original article from Associations Now.

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