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What is a Seminar, and how do I plan one and choose a venue?

A speaker delivering a Seminar to a group at The Masons Table
A seminar taking place in our Bar Room

According to indeed.com, "a seminar is an event hosted by a corporation or business to teach attendees about a new subject, technique or practice."


A well-delivered seminar enables colleagues, partners and/or external attendees to engage with relevant content from your organisation, amongst like-minded people, in an environment that fosters cross-pollination and lasting learning.


Whether your seminar is enhancing skills and knowledge, driving business growth, or connecting individuals to your mission or learnings, the essential steps to planning a great seminar remain the same.


In this post, we'll discuss how to plan a perfect seminar. Looking for a venue for your next seminar in Singapore? Check out our event spaces at The Masons Table here.


How to plan a seminar


It takes just a few simple yet crucial steps to plan a meaningful seminar:

  1. Define your objectives

  2. Know your audience

  3. Devise interaction

  4. Invite experts

  5. Choose your setup and format

  6. Prepare resources

  7. Encourage networking

  8. Evaluate and collect feedback

  9. Keep the momentum going

  10. Book your venue


 

1. Define your seminar objectives

  • Before planning your seminar's content, you should start by defining a meaningful purpose and clear objectives for your session.

  • Ask yourself "Who, what, when and why?": Who is attending, What do they want to achieve, When are you reaching out to them, and Why do they want to attend?

  • Understanding these core needs and defining your session's objectives will ensure that your seminar is a valuable session for your attendees.



2. Know your audience

  • Building from your basic understanding of your audience and your session objectives, deep-dive into your attendees needs, and personalise the content of your seminar, to ensure it resonates and is impactful and insightful.

  • For example, you would not deliver an "Introduction to Digital Marketing" session to a room full of CMOs, or an introduction to your company's background to a session dominated by your own colleagues!

  • Gaining a deep understanding of the personal needs and motivations of your session participants allows you to focus deeply on content that really matters, which will appeal more to your participants.


3. Devise interaction

  • A passive lecture-style session is unlikely to engage your attendees in your material, and could result in poor outcomes and low satisfaction.

  • Encourage active participation and collaboration among attendees, and incorporate interactive workshops, group discussions, and hands-on activities to engage participants.

  • In venues like The Masons Table, there are spaces and table layouts available for session breakouts, group activities, and other interactive activities. Venues may also be able to arrange tools such as whiteboards, paper and stationery.


An audience watching a panel discussion at The Masons Table
A panel discussion in our Main Room

4. Invite expert speakers and panellists

  • Your audience will value the insights brought by expert speakers and facilitators, who can leverage their practical or theoretical subject knowledge, to inform and inspire your audience.

  • Invite key subject experts to join a panel of speakers, and facilitate meaningful discussions about key topics. The organic discussion of subject material between experts can be highly beneficial for your audience.

  • If you don't know how to find leaders in your field, consider reaching out to your network, or approaching people of interest on LinkedIn.


5. Consider your setup and format

  • Some seminars, for example sessions focused on specialised internal training, can only be delivered with an in-person audience. In this case, you will need to consider the space needs and other requirements of your audience - for example, will they need to write a lot?

  • Other seminars, such as a research presentation, a panel discussion, or a white paper launch, could be delivered as a webinar, either with a fully-virtual, or a hybrid attendance.

  • Venues such as The Masons Table offer hybrid webinar capabilities, with the ability to connect the in-house microphones to major virtual meeting platforms, and hear your virtual speakers over the venue's audio system.



6. Prepare materials and resources

  • Your venue is likely to offer a range of Audio/Visual equipment to enhance your event - at The Masons Table, events have access to large 4K TVs and performance-grade microphones. Ensure your seminar session engages your audience by creating compelling content, such as corporate videos, engaging slides/presentations, and live demonstrations.

  • Plan and produce resources for attendees to take away and reference after the seminar, such as printed booklets, information cards, and even exclusive virtual content that can be accessed after the session.

  • This will ensure that your attendees take away lasting learning from your session. Branded material will keep you top of mind in the future.



A selection of canapes

7. Encourage networking

  • Facilitate shared learning and cross-pollination between your attendees by planning in networking sessions during your seminar, either between subjects, or after the main event.

  • Some venues may have separate rooms or areas which are more suitable for mingling and conversation-starting; at The Masons Table, the smaller Bar Room is optimal for fostering a lively networking environment, with great drinks and canapés.

  • Consider extending your seminar by treating your participants to lunch or dinner; a great opportunity for natural offline discussions to occur, while enjoying a delicious meal and drinks.


8. Evaluate and collect feedback

  • After the seminar, you should gather feedback from participants to assess the effectiveness of your session, and look for points of improvement.

  • Feedback and learning in the delivery of your own seminar sessions ensures that your material remains fresh, and that your methodology stays up to date with the latest trends and technologies in seminar delivery.

  • Don't do this:



9. Keep the momentum going

  • Build upon your session by developing a series of seminars; for example, you could expand a session about the latest insights about Artificial Intelligence in South East Asia, to a full series about the impact of AI on global business.

  • Accompanied by a range of supporting material such as booklets and articles, your attendees will remain engaged with the learning process, and may attend a future seminar that you host.


10. Book your preferred seminar venue!

  • When you're all set, secure your preferred venue to ensure you don't miss your seminar date!

  • Click below to fill in our event enquiry form:



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