John Pytel and Conferences I/O co-founder Dave Mulder were used to the frustrating and impersonal nature of the lecture hall class structure at Michigan State University, which has over 47,000 students. “No one ever asked questions although everyone had questions,” said Pytel. Instead of asking a question in fear of looking dumb in front of 500 classmates, students would rather be confused about a topic and keep their questions to themselves. The idea for Conferences I/O was born through this frustration. John Pytel describes Conferences I/O as a “Product that makes it very easy for an audience to interact with a presenter in real-time.”
Audience response systems, also known as a “clicker,” helps aid the interaction of an audience with a presenter/host in real-time. They are often used for voting and polling in the university setting, on game shows, and in conference settings. Although audience response systems have been around for decades, with the growth of smartphones and technology, there is no need for a separate device when attendees/participants can use their own devices to interact with the speaker. Conferences I/O is taking the idea they had originally came up with for the classroom setting and are applying it to a much larger potential industry – events and conferences.
John Pytel started Conferences I/O with co-founder Dave Mulder after just 6 months in the corporate world. Although he learned a lot from the experience, including how to work in sales, John states that he was a bad employee and just not right for the corporate atmosphere.
Instead of working for a large corporations sales department, John is living his dream of operating his own business while updating an outdated product.
2013 CEO National Conference
John Pytel will join 80 entrepreneurs and business leaders who will speak to a group of over 1,000 students at the 2013 Collegiate Entrepreneurs’ Organization (CEO) National Conference in Chicago. The event will take place on October 31 – November 2nd at the Hyatt Regency McCormick Place. The session that John will be hosting is From the Classroom to the Boardroom: How to Start Your First Company Using the Lean Startup Methodology.
The Lean Startup Method has been transforming how many entrepreneurs start new businesses effectively while discovering and fixing flaws early in the process before spending mass amounts of time and money on a business idea. John says that without using the Lean Startup Method, “I think I would have probably failed.” “I was clueless about a lot of important things,” said John. After using the Lean Startup Method to start and grow his business, Conferences I/O, John now wants to share his experience and the Method with as many people as possible.
Come and hear John Pytel and others share their entrepreneurial stories and share their tips and advice! Registration for the 2013 CEO National Conference is currently open and all are welcome to participate and attend in the event. To find out more about how to support the Collegiate Entrepreneurs’ Organization, visit www.c-e-o.org.
The highlights are below, but listen to the full interview with young entrepreneur John Pytel here!
– Have you always been entrepreneurial? “As a kid I always wanted to start my own ice cream store.”
– Why he only lasted 6 months in the corporate world before working on his own company.
– Why audience response systems are needed: “People can only listen for so long before they check-out.”
– Best advice for young entrepreneurs? Start early. Failing early on comes with lower risks. “The longer you wait, the riskier it’s going to get for you.”