Engagement and participation. Those are two words that every facilitator, event organizer and meeting professional keeps in mind when organizing events. Room arrangement can have a huge effect on these elements. It’s a critical aspect of every event because the meeting space impacts both the speaker’s effectiveness and interaction with the attendees. With Q Center’s flexible meeting spaces, you can implement different setups depending on the size of your group. Here are the 10 most popular room setups for different types of events:
1) AUDITORIUM THEATER
Auditorium room arrangements are common and classic. Participants are seated in rows of chairs, similar to what you may experience in a movie theater. There’s generally a gap in the middle to allow easy access for central seats and a large stage to accommodate speakers, visuals and audio. This style is typical for events with a large number of attendees in a lecture setting.
A u-shape seating arrangement is just what it sounds like. The tables and chairs are setup in a letter “U” shape and arranged in an open-ended shape with the participants facing inwards. It is a classic boardroom setup that allows attendees to face both each other and the speaker. You can also remove the tables just leaving the chairs in a U-shape for open interaction between everyone.
The banquet arrangement is a round table setup with attendees facing each other like at a dinner table. This encourages full interaction between the people sitting at the table. It is often used for interactive workshops with group discussions or social events.
4) BOARDROOM OR CONFERENCE
Conference style setups have one larger table that fits a wide range of people. All attendees face the middle to allow discussion and interaction from all directions. The conference or boardroom style can also be adjusted to include many tables that form a hollow rectangle.
Tables and chairs are arranged in parallel rows facing the front of the room. It is common for lectures and only allows interaction between the speaker and the audience. Attendees at the same table can do small group exercises or share their work with one another.
6) CRESCENT ROUNDS
Just like the name sounds, attendees are seated in a round table leaving empty space towards the speaker. Tables are either scattered or placed to maximize engagement and visibility. The setup is conductive to small group exercises or discussions while keeping the focus on the speaker.
Reception arrangements are really similar to the banquet arrangements but with extra cocktail tables or high boys. The high boys don’t have chairs and are meant to be for mingling or networking. They are also good for breakout discussions and collaborations.
The chevron or v-shaped setup is similar to a classroom arrangement, but the tables and chairs are angled for better visibility and engagement between participants and speaker.
The Fishbowl setup is used for discussion type events. A couple of chairs are arranged in the middle, the fishbowl, while the other chairs are arranged in circles around the middle. Speakers take the inner seats and start discussing the topic. The people in the outside chairs observe just as you would look in on a fishbowl.
This style is often used for forums or large group discussions where participants can openly discuss topics covered with the speakers.
10) TEAM TABLES
Team tables are a similar setup to the banquet style, but are more informal. This setup is meant to encourage attendees to move around and engage in group discussion.
So which one of these setups is best for your next event? Use the table down below to determine the best setup based on your group's size and how interactive you want your event to be.