A major retail chain recently invited their 700 shop managers from around the country to a major conference. The company had a new vision and strategies for 2013 and wanted to involve and engage their key staff in both.

To facilitate this process, we provided 110 tablets and local servers to manage the system. During the session the tablets were used to send in questions for the management team. Examples included:

  • Can we undertake more online promotions with our brands?
  • What practical activities are you going to be working on to ensure every single person understands the culture?

Messages were moderated on a designated tablet by the company’s internal comms team and selected ones sent to another tablet held by the CEO, so that he saw only relevant comments and could deal with them accordingly. This gave total control of the process to the client, allowing for transparency and flexibility during the live event.

After lunch 4 breakout sessions ran simultaneously where presenters rotated between rooms.

Tablets were used to answer specific challenges to the business in each breakout session. These messages were automatically labelled and merged so that all messages from each breakout session could easily be identified.

In each of the four sessions, 10 minutes were allocated to collect the thoughts and ideas of the delegates.

Over the four breakout sessions, over 2,000 messages were received providing the client with invaluable insight into the thoughts and experiences of their shop managers.

The use of messaging also gave the delegates ownership of the new strategies for the business and made them feel an integral part of the vision. It demonstrated the motivation and commitment of the shop managers and created a buzz and enthusiasm throughout the event that simply could not have been produced by other methods.