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Red:Green Cards

Object of Play

Feedback is difficult to manage in large group settings. For the presenter and the audience to track with each other, they need a means to communicate their approval, disagreement, or confusion as the event progresses. Red:Green Cards provide a simple means for channeling this feedback.

Number of Players

Works well in any size group, but especially useful in large groups of 20 or more

Duration of Play

A simple Red/Green exchange takes only a moment to play—the length of time it takes to ask a question. If there is disagreement or confusion about a question, time for discussion may be required.

How to Play

Each participant needs two cards: one red and one green. During the event, they may hold up the green card to indicate their approval or the red card to indicate their disapproval.  In their simplest form, the green card means “yes” and the red card means “no.”

Participants may hold up the cards to answer a specific question or they may use them simply to show how they feel about a topic at any time. For example, a presenter may ask the audience directly, “Have we covered this topic sufficiently to move on?” to get a quick understanding check. Likewise, participants may hold up their cards unprompted, nodding heads and holding up green cards in response to a topic—or holding up red cards to register an objection.

Strategy

Using Red/Green Cards helps solve two sticky problems in large groups: it eliminates the need for “we all agree” commentary, while surfacing participants who would otherwise fume over unheard objections. In short, it’s a simple way to open a feedback loop with a large group.

Red:Green Cards was developed by Jerry Michalski. In his design, yellow and gray cards may be incorporated to represent “neutral” and “confusion.”

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