'Please turn your phone to silent, and if you need to take a call, step out in the hallway. Thank-you'. Sound familiar? Almost all instructor led classes begin with these familiar words. The mobile device has increasingly become the enemy of class instructors for the past 20 years.
Bob, a 20 year class instructor shares his passion for this heated topic. 'I find participant phones intrusive. Worse yet, now I'm dealing with texting, Skype, and host of other devices that support more disruptive distractions in my class' Bob is not alone, there is lots of research to support his observations. In fact schools, universities and other education providers often set guidelines for their use, and it is often very restrictive.
More tech savvy instructors are learning to embrace the technology. 'Please make sure you bring your mobile device to class. We will have a number of exercises that we will require them.' This is the intro to my most recent sales class. Why? I have decided to stop fighting the trend and learned to work with it. Here are 3 interesting and engaging ways I have learned to leverage a participant's interest in their smart phone and my class material at the same time!
1 | Create of Poll or Quiz in real time
The tried-and-true “raise your hand if you…” classroom learning activity gets an update with mobile learning. Using a service like Poll Everywhere and your learners’ cell phones, you can set up a poll or quiz, and track instant answers sent via text, Twitter, or a web browser. Start with a practice question—something fun—to get your learners used to the technology, and then continue to engage them throughout the class.
2 | Create an Online Learning Space
An online learning space (for example, a members-only group on LinkedIn or a Google site) offers tools and functionality for interacting with learners (and in some cases allowing them to interact with each other) during the classroom training.
3 | Use Voicemail in an Interesting Way
Set up your outgoing voicemail message for learners to call in and listen to as a part of an activity. Wondering how you might use this? Here an example: the message could be a scenario, provide clues that learners need to use to solve a puzzle, or address a series of questions as part of an activity. Here is an example of an inexpensive voicemail service.
Hope the helps...
Paul Kidston, President, Lead Consultant and Trainer @ Sales Training Experts
firstname.lastname@example.org | Contact: 1-877-353-7253