Andrew Hollo is the Principal Consultant at Workwell Consulting in Australia and a proficient Mentimeter user. Andrew uses Mentimeter to help conduct interactive strategy and leadership workshops for government agencies and nonprofits. We spoke to him about how he uses Mentimeter to create innovative workshops, the incredible results that he is able to achieve, and how Mentimeter has helped support his work.
Workshops on strategy and leadership are important for many organizations, but it can be difficult to collect the right information from participants and get the full picture. Before using Mentimeter, Andrew found that he relied on in-person questioning and group discussions in order to collect responses. He would then gather selective feedback from a larger group, some of which he would record.
While this method may be effective in its own way, it is not time efficient and requires an incredible amount of time and effort on the part of the facilitator. Furthermore, the amount of extra work this creates would undoubtedly mean that time is taken away from more important duties. By conducting workshops in this manner Andrew noted that they were highly prone to omissions, and selective bias, and favored extroverts and those who are more confident articulating their ideas.
This is by no means a unique problem, and something experienced by many management consultants and others who lead workshops. Oftentimes they find that those more comfortable speaking up in front of a group tend to dominate the discussion while introverts and those more averse to speaking in public fade into the background.
As a result, some of the best ideas and some vital points of view can be left unsaid simply due to the structure of the meeting during which they can be raised. Andrew, however, found that by using Mentimeter he was easily able to create better, more inclusive workshops;
“I can pose a question easily (so easily, in fact, that the group can suggest questions and answer categories, and I can type them straight in, and have them respond immediately) and within a minute or two, have aggregated responses from every participant.”
An example Andrew spoke about was one particular workshop during which he wanted to ask a leadership group of 30 people some detailed questions about leadership skills and attributes, rating importance, and current level. Not only was he able to do this with Mentimeter but also display these results thanks to a 2x2 matrix.
The benefit of these interactive slides is threefold for Andrew and for others in similar positions as facilitators. Firstly they allow everyone in the group to participate anonymously thus eliminating the aforementioned fear factor that affects many. Anyone in the group can submit their thoughts by simply joining the presentation and voting with their smartphone.
Secondly, Andrew can display results there and then in real-time helping to generate conversations and discussions. These visualizations are clear for everyone to see and Andrew can use them as a platform to start a discussion or encourage other members of the group to give feedback. This allows for a more seamless experience for both presenter and audience member.
Lastly, these results and submissions will be saved within his presentation meaning that Andrew can always go back and see how the group responded to his questions. This allows him to do some self-reflection on the meeting to address what questions were most effective, which resulted in the most interesting responses, and ways he can improve going forward. He can, likewise, send these results to everyone that joined so they too can reflect on the meeting in their own time.
Aside from the benefits of the workshops, Andrew also comments that Mentimeter is “easy to use by me, but even easier to use by participants. It has no lag, and the design is great - it looks top-notch and makes me look totally professional with my clients."