How Interactive Response Technology Makes For Better Meetings

How Interactive Response Technology Makes For Better Meetings

How Interactive Response Technology Makes For Better Meetings

Interactive response technology allows the audience in a meeting, seminar, or presentation to interact directly with the meeting’s content. There are several different forms of interactive, or audience, response technology, but they all share the advantage that they let the audience get more out of the presentation. That, in turn, makes the meeting more valuable and gives it a better return on investment for everyone involved.

Consider this example; many meetings or presentations involve asking a question or two of the audience in an attempt to increase engagement and elicit a response. However, this only engages one, or at most a few, members of the audience. Audience response technology lets everyone in the audience participate at the same time, and the meeting leader or presenter can quickly gather all of the feedback, project it onto the screen, and discuss it. This not only encourages more engagement from the audience, but also makes the questions more meaningful, because it allows the leader to collect more data.

Also, this sort of interactive “clicker” technology acts like a force multiplier for meetings, because it makes the time spent in those meetings more productive. It is always a challenge to make everyone in the room interested and engaged- that’s just a fact of the way presentations work. With a response system, everyone can participate, and that boosts engagement significantly. The capacity to ensure the whole room is interacting with the meeting increases how much people remember.

The way interactive response technology works is that it combines hardware and software. The hardware component is a small device that audience members hold; often this device is simply called a “clicker”. The clicker might have buttons to choose from among a few options in a poll, or the ability to type out full sentences for more complete feedback. The software is what lets the presenter gather the responses to a question and tabulate them live. IRT can scale up from a meeting of just a few people to a gathering of hundreds. In addition, the presenter has the power to put together several questions in advance- as many as they feel are necessary.

Adding IRT to a presentation means that everyone gains more, including the presenter. The overall impact of the meeting increases, and that is important, because meetings do consume a significant amount of time. If people leave the meeting and feel that they didn’t gain anything from being there, then the lost time represents a meaningful loss to the company. This gets worse if the meeting had an important goal, like announcing the use of new software or collecting feedback about a change in policy.

The technology combines direct feedback with data collection and live analysis, permitting a wide range of potential uses. Creative use of IRT sets meetings apart in the memory of the attendees, helping the content to settle more deeply. That’s why it is such an advantage for a company to conduct its meetings with IRT- the company will get much more done with its time as opposed to going without. Interactive response technology does not need to be a part of every meeting, but it should be a part of at least some.

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