General election fever is upon the UK. Various polls will be aiming to give the population a projection of how things might go. Contesting parties will be looking for a steer as to what is working, or where focus is required in the lead up to polling day on June 8th. The accuracy of these various opinion polls has rightly been called into question following some recent ‘shock’ results. Fortunately for businesses, there is a much more effective way to gather meaningful insights to base their decisions upon.
Live polling has long been accepted as a powerful tool for measuring employee understanding and opinion for businesses. However the cost, logistical implications and expertise historically required to offer it meant it was generally restricted to providing ‘Clicker’ audience response devices only in annual conferences or more formal training courses (i.e. the one with a larger budget).
The arrival of polling apps has transformed the landscape meaning that live polling and text based Q&A have become an expected feature of the modern workplace, most notably for use in Employee Comms meetings (aka Town Halls).
1) Live polls provide instant understanding of both knowledge levels, and the general feeling in the business- a great temperature check. Opening up the feedback channels before the meeting is also a great way of setting a relevant and meaningful agenda.
2) It’s democratic, everyone gets a chance to show their support for comments, ideas or questions by ‘liking’ them in the discussion board of an app, with the most ‘liked’ rising to the top of the display. Where time is limited the most important questions to the group can be addressed, not just those people shouting the loudest.
3) People ask great questions and share their ideas when there is no risk or judgement from peers or bosses. Apps can be set to be truly anonymous making it inclusive and ensuring that more voices are heard and every voice is equal.
4) It saves time- no more evaluation forms or web surveys open for days; polls provide instant feedback and a much higher level of responses. The real value is that the real-time insights generated can be reacted to while there is still the opportunity to do so.
5) They are the future- well actually they are the now. What else haven’t we started using an app for in the last couple of years? Employees expect to be using this tech. ‘Clicker’ devices and online satisfaction surveys were about when everyone had desktop PC’s and pagers!
6) Let’s face it, employee comms meetings have a reputation for being boring or a channel for company propaganda and therefore dreaded by all sides. A voting app bridges the engagement gap keeping people alert and feeling involved.
7) Individuals in the same organisation may work across a variety of smartphones, tablets, laptops and platforms and increasingly are mixing work and personal activities on their own devices. A polling app than can be accessed on any of them, which means everyone can take part on an equal footing whatever their role or means of connection.
8) Interaction is not restricted to the physical office, remote workforces whether working from home or across multiple offices can all take part and engage. All anyone needs is an internet enabled device and internet access.
9) You’re in control. With a moderation feature, organisers can control what messages and results are displayed back to attendees. No trolls, embarrassed presenters or risk of the anarchy that bosses often fear with using this technology.
10) It’s REALLY easy to implement an app. Sign up online and you can be running polls and Q&A from a browser or your PowerPoint presentation in minutes. Can’t think of what questions to ask? They can be downloaded from the app providers site too. (A very easy way to look great to staff and bosses alike as an organiser!). As for cost, well due to mass adoption and the ease of deployment, buying the coffees is likely to be the biggest bill of the day…
Not using a polling and Q&A app yet? Why not Sign up for a free Meetoo account and transform your next Employee Comms meeting…
Peter Eyre Passionate about tech for better meetings and education, SaaS, growth hacking, apps, business, marketing, leadership, travel, surfing, campervans and raising three amazing daughters. CMO at Meetoo, former Managing Director of IML Australia and Managing Director of Lumi UK.
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