We host sessions diving into moderation best practices about once a month, and anyone can attend! There are also many great moderators in the community who can give you tips! We've also seen a few things that have usually served conversation hosts well:
- More speakers is better: This feels counterintuitive, but helps bring in more perspectives, feels more casual and serendipitous. This also tends to bring in more people as listeners since more people get notified. The audience also enjoys seeing groups on stage, as it feels a bit like they're listening in on a group hangout. The sweet spot it somewhere between 5 and 15 speakers, but we've seen less and more work too!
- Help speakers share the stage: It's not as rich or engaging a conversation when one person dominates the room, so moderators can avoid this by actively encouraging others to speak. One way to do this is to watch for people who unmute (this is an unofficial signal that a speaker may want to chime in, or offer a reaction or response).
- Don't be shy about 'managing' the stage: Sometimes the stage will get too big and it'll be harder to keep the conversation flow without disruptions or people talking over others. Don't be shy to move people to the audience once they've shared their thoughts — best practice to let someone know politely that you'll move them down.
- Develop your own style: As we said, this isn't a science, but an art! So feel free to experiment, try out multiple moderation styles, have fun, and find what works for you!