Breakout Session Ideas
General Sessions in the main ballroom are a time to share information to a broad audience, information that applies to everyone
Breakout sessions are a great time to dive deep into topics and have more interactive discussions that allow attendees to share viewpoints, ask questions and connect with fellow attendees. Engagement in a topic can improve retention and understanding.
The more intimate, and casual nature of a breakout session allows opportunities for creative use of space to encourage interaction, thoughtful input and brainstorming. Here are a couple of ways TRG worked with our clients to help arrange interactive breakout sessions:
In this arrangement, attendees were assigned a group. Each group rotated around to each table for 20 minutes to discuss different topics. Each table had a moderator to spark conversation on the assigned topic for that table as well as to keep participants on topic.
Notes were gathered from each roundtable session that were brought back to the office and used to guide future decisions and plans.
For this session the groups were asked to develop ideas for new programs and solutions to various issues. The session began in theater style seating at the center of the room. Attendees received an overview of the topic followed by instructions for the interactive session.
Attendees were then directed to seating groups in each corner of the room. Each corner had flipcharts with colored sticky notes and markers. Participants were able to write down ideas and vote for items using the various colored sticky notes.
This Brainstorming sessions resulted in many creative ideas as well as ranking based on participant voting that could be turned into implementable updates, changes and new programs.
Apps such as Poll Everywhere allows for live interactive participation using mobile devices. Presenters can share information about a topic and ask attendees to vote on various options. The smaller group sizes and intimate setting of a breakout session also allows more free flowing discussion regarding the results of the voting generating meaningful information for the session leaders.
These are just a few ways to shake up breakout sessions. We would love to talk to your team about creative breakout sessions for your next event.