The technological system will be used in training programmes for business, political and communication leaders.
(Bilbao. May 2011). A system based on a "smart suit" so that a leader can increase his or her capacity to influence in front of his or her audience. Consisting of an elastic jersey with wireless sensors, it is capable of picking up in real time the motor gesture that diminishes the effectiveness of a leader in his or her communication action. This technological advance, which forms part of a training programme for leaders, has been developed by the company Adur Emotional Gym, which has its headquarters in Bilbao and which specialises in boosting the personal capacities of leaders, and the R+D Centre Tekniker-IK4, based in Eibar (Gipuzkoa, Basque Country).
This technological tool, for which a prototype is already available, has been successfully tried out, and has had a patent applied for. It consists of 17 sensors arranged on an elastic jersey with a wireless connection to a computer. The application analyses the leader's body position and architecture and compares it with the pattern established for effective motor gesture by means of specific software. The garment is comfortable, light and can be concealed under an item of ordinary clothing.
This way, with proper personalised training the leader can achieve his or her maximum power of influence.
Visual and auditpry ‘Feedback'
The application provides the user with feedback through a cartoon figure who produces the actual movements of the person wearing the suit, and points out which parts of the body are deviating from the pattern established as constituting effective motor gesture, and which restrict his or capacity to influence as a leader. This diagnosis in real time allows the person to feel the ineffective motor gesture, which is the first step towards improving it through training.
The system is based on the contributions of biomechanics, neurophysiology of movement and body posture. "It's not about acting, it's about using the body correctly as a vehicle of personal experience and for more effective communication," points out Alejandro Lasa, Adur's CEO.
Lasa points out that motor gesture is "a leader's letter of introduction," and considers that "even his or her words lose credibility if they don't coincide with his or her body." Using the results offered by the "smart suit", the basis is established for training by means of several coaching sessions.
This is systematized learning which, with the contributions of the tool and a personal trainer, the leader is able to make his or her authentic, personal Effective Motor Gesture flourish, so that he or she can put it into practice in professional situations.
The training programme to reach a level of proficiency in Effective Motor Gesture consists of three practical sessions with the "smart suit", personalised monitoring over a period of three months, and a further recycling session.
Technology contribution of Tekniker-IK4
To develop the system, the role of Tekniker-IK4 has been crucial as regards technological input, since the centre has been commissioned to develop the application and establish suitable parameters to generate the pattern of effective motor gesture.
As Iñaki Maurtua, head of the R+D centre's Autonomous Intelligent Systems Unit, the role of Tekniker-IK4 is based on "two basic contributions": firstly, the "real-time processing of the 17 sensors" fitted into the garment and "its classification in line with the pattern" of effective motor gesture, which has been provided by Adur; secondly, "providing the person who is training with feedback by means of voice, text and a virtual avatar". Maurtur also pointed out that this project constitutes "a totally new field of application" for this technology, since it is moves outside the academic sphere to provide a real company with real added value.
Tekniker-IK4's Autonomous Intelligent Systems Unit works in three fields: robotics, inspection and interaction. In Maurtua's view, the three are linked by the need to process using sensors of a different kind, and to intelligently process the information they provide.
With experience spanning nearly 30 years in research into applied technology and its transfer to companies, the Tekniker-IK4 R+D centre has achieved a high degree of specialisation in four major areas (Precision Engineering and Mechatronics, Surface Engineering, Production and Automation Engineering and Manufacturing Technologies), which enables it to put its state-of-the-art technology at the service of any kind of task.
Adur, emotional training of leaders
Adur Emotional Gym is a coaching company with over 20 years of research devoted to training leaders using a model of intervention that sets it apart, is innovative and recognised as scientific. It uses the latest advances in neuroscience to improve the personal capabilities of leaders in different fields.
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