Classes just got a little more interesting at Harvard Law School, Columbia University and Sciences Po, an elite university in Paris.
A 65-student class dedicated to making students think critically about reimagining society, “Progressive Alternatives: Institutional Reconstruction Today,” is using telepresence to create a discussion that transcends three campuses located in different parts of the world.
According to an article in The Harvard Crimson, the class is taught by Harvard Law School professor Roberto M. Unger and includes commentary from Columbia University professor Jeffrey D. Sachs and Laurence Tubiana, a professor from Sciences Po.
With its telepresence system, the instructors and class are able to interact in realtime. The first hour of the class is a lecture and comment from each professor and the remaining one hour allows times for questions and a lively discussion. Read More »
A great discussion here following a virtual fieldtrip (VFT) to the Great Barrier Reef in Australia by a 5th grade class at Augusta Elementary School in Greenville, South Carolina, .
Cisco’s Dr. Lance Ford discusses the experience with one of the 5th grade students and her father who also attended the VFT.
Margaret Murphy, the 5th grade teacher who planned the VFT had this to say:
“Extending an opportunity to students to (voluntarily) come to school and immerse themselves in a foreign ecosystem is an amazing new method to reach our children….Not only did our students leave asking and thinking of more questions than they ever knew about the Great Barrier Reef, they were probing their parents to answer questions that the parents have never considered before. I have received more parental and student feedback on this VFT than I have on our three day (face-to-face) field trip to a South Carolina ecosystem.” Read More…
Online meetings are a great day to deliver a product demo. They can save time and money, but doing a great job requires you adapt your skill set so you do a terrific job.
In addition to the marketing and public relations skills you already have, you’ll need to learn to embrace the tools you have for the online demo and then pump up the volume on your “wow” factor since having a nice lunch afterward isn’t on the agenda.
Lessons from the Front
Software product manager Gopal Shenoy writes about his recent experiences conducting three demos during online meetings. Two went well and the third “was an outright disaster”.
The bottom line: You can choose to avoid doing the homework to your own peril or spend the time during discovery to start building effective relationships with your prospects.
It pains me when people come to demo and, instead of putting on a magic show — showing off how humans (themselves) and software interact — they try to inspire the audience through their words and by speaking about their ideas; or, just as bad, they flip through a bunch of preloaded tabs in an effort to “show” the product, as if pre-loaded tabs are any better than PowerPoint slides.
Technology Do’s and Don’ts
1. Find out some basics before you set up the WebEx.
Will they be in an office, a conference room? Are there likely to be distractions? Do what you can to help them control their experience so you will be heard and you’ll have their attention. Dialing in on a phone line is probably optimum for them to hear every nuance (it also helps if you decide to record the meeting).