Brainshark’s Boston Shark Meet: Kineo Reports

Hot off the heels of DevLearn, Kineo US got to jump in the shark-infested waters at Brainshark’s Boston Shark Meet Conference on November 6.

What’s a Shark Meet, you ask? Well, we’re not talking about Great White hunters but rather a group of professionals focused on finding ways to use Brainshark more effectively within their organisations.

Brainshark is an easy to use, cloud-based platform to author, deliver and track mobile-ready content. It allows you to create content from PowerPoint’s, videos, photos, PDFs and other source materials. You can sequence and narrate content, you can record audio and you can add questions and surveys. Find out more about Brainshark in Kineo’s Brainshark review.

An intimate and very focused conference, the Shark Meet brought 200 people together for inspiration and hands-on learning.

Joe Sabia, a viral video artist with a focus on Internet culture, kicked things off with an opening keynote that got the audience out of their learning and HR roles and thinking about broader issues around presentation design and engagement. Sabia had six ideas to share on making presentations more exciting:

  1. Be sure to serve up dessert along with the vegetablesThe veggies may be your dull learning content, but be sure to make them memorable with
  2. Share cultural reference as part of that dessert course. This can be a challenge when trying to connect with a global audience, but find ways to show you’ve got your finger on the pulse of culture.
  3. Make it interactive.We’ve heard this a lot on the elearning side of things, but he’s talking about more than clicking. Joe shared ways to get people moving behind their computers.
  4. Use your space as a playground. Joe showed a video of a classroom teacher who did some really fun things with a PowerPoint projected on the wall – using video he made the PowerPoint part of the classroom with a shadow version of himself onscreen and interacting with the students. Playful and surprising.
  5. Share unscientific research.Get people to raise their hands to get the human view on things. This is easy to do in Brainshark, which has a polling feature that shares live results. Offering offbeat but convincing evidence shows your passion…and helps spread that passion.
  6. Harness the power of surprise. Sabia urges us to put one real surprise in a presentation. He mentioned primate research that shows that surprise intensifies emotion 300-400%.And with that emotion you get more attention.

Sabia’s closing message: “Be the 1%--stand out from what everyone else is doing. Don’t let the corporate world corporatize you out of your creativity.”

We say “hear, hear” to Joe’s vision and think it’s right in-line with Kineo’s approach to elearning: get their attention, make it emotional, make it memorable, and – whenever possible – make it a little bit sassy.

And then it was time for lunch! Unlike the typical conference, here participants got to choose from different dining formats:

  • Feast from a lovely buffet with seating at roundtables for networking and open discussion on topics including video, elearning and training
  • Grab a box lunch box and sit on one of two overview sessions: Brainshark or Slideshark (Brainshark’s free product that enables PowerPoint viewing on iPads and iPhones).

We thought this was a great way to structure the lunch hour! It gave people lots of choices while making the most of their time.

Kineo’s Cammy Bean presented a lively afternoon session on Simple Strategies to Make eLearning More Engaging.

Additional concurrent sessions were run, with hands-on focus on using PowerPoint, working with video, and – of course – working with Brainshark as a development tool.

All in all, it was a great day—well organized and packed with great ideas and useful takeaways.

Look for more on Brainshark’s City Tours and check to see if one is coming your way.