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Have them sitting pretty at meetings

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Seating arrangements become the top priority when planning a successful off-site meeting. Here’s how to set up the room—no matter what the meeting’s size—to make sure attendees can see, hear and be heard:

Theater: small, armless convention chairs set up in rows, with a center and side aisles. When to use it: general sessions or shorter meetings that do not require note taking or much interaction with presenters.

Advantage: It takes up the least amount of space.

Classroom: chairs lined along six-foot draped tables. When to use it: lecture-style meetings for 30 attendees or more.

Advantage: Attendees always prefer having a table, particularly when they need to write in all-day sessions.

Chevron: rows placed at a 45-degree angle toward the room’s center. When to use it: best in larger spaces.

Advantage: It allows attendees to see past each other more easily and reduces neck strain.

U-shape: set up six-foot draped tables plus one or more arced, draped table(s). When to use it: perfect for a small, interactive meeting led by a moderator who stands and moves around.

Hollow square: four or more six-foot draped tables arranged in a square shape. When to use it: small meetings with 30 or fewer attendees.

Advantage: Attendees can interact easily.

Round or oval table. When to use it: for a small, intense and long meeting of 12 attendees or fewer.

Advantage: An intimate setting that allows a small group to get down to business.

Tip: Prepare your own room setup with the seating and floor-plan software available on these sites:

 

 

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