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Running Panels Like a Pro

Devil's in the Details: Organising a Successful, Engaging, and Thought-provoking Panel Discussion

Date: November 23, 2022

Location: Virtual


Moderating, or participating on, panels at conferences and events is a great way to build a professional profile, brand, and network, and to share opinions and perspectives. However, even the most experienced panel presenter may suffer from various degrees of panel-participation anxiety. Concerns around what to say, how to prepare, what happens on the day, what to do if you forget what to say, or freeze, are quite common. But how do you go about setting yourself up for success?


On November 23, Quantum Women hosted an intimate Zoom session with two fascinating and successful senior professionals; Wietske Blees, a highly recognised analyst, researcher, and journalist, and a deep expert in this topic, and Dr Alistair Rew, a global leader in the financial services and investment management industry and Australia Chair of the Alternative Investment Management Association, who taught participants how to organise an engaging and successful panel discussion


Wietske discussed what is needed to be an effective moderator and a great panellist. She shared her extensive experience running events targeted at senior professionals, frequently in highly technical disciplines, covering critical areas including preparing to be on a panel, what makes a good panellist/moderator, questioning techniques, and other tricks of the trade necessary for a successful panel event.


Alistair shared his insights from his journey and experiences around being a panellist and moderator, and how he works with panel and event organisers to make sure he and his fellow panellists are set up for a great session.


This session was part of Quantum Women's Elevate pillar, where we provide tools and opportunities for women to elevate their voice in both private and public settings.


The recording is only available to registrants and will also be shared on our membership portal once launched.


About the Panellists:

Wietske is a highly accomplished and recognised analyst, researcher, and journalist with almost 20 years global experience in financial regulation, risk management, derivatives, and technology. She is an expert in arranging, running, and hosting industry events, panels and committees, targeting senior executives. Being a highly successful journalist, Wietske is an expert interviewer and moderator, bringing unique insights and experiences into how to be an effective communicator, moderator and panellist.


Wietske was recently one of the professional trainers on the inaugural Elevating Women’s Voices program, a joint initiative by the Alternative Investment Management Association and 100 Women in Finance, that successfully worked with 30 women across the Australian investment management industry, over an 8-week period, to develop skills and confidence to be a successful communicator, panellist, moderator, committee, working group, and/or board member.


Dr Alistair Rew is very passionate about diversity and inclusion in the workplace, and building diverse, inclusive and successful teams. Alistair has worked in the alternative investment management industry for 25 years, holding global leadership and investment positions in London, New York, and Sydney.


Alistair is chair of the Alternative Investment Management Association (Australia), a director of Australian Students Asset Management, a co-founder of Elevating Women’s Voices, and Women in Alternatives, a director of Quantum Women, and an independent director and advisor in the alternative investment management industry. Alistair also works closely with senior executives, boards, and the broader investment management industry, in representing and shaping the future of the industry



The QW team.



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