sly : marketing

My Worst Nightmare as a Speaker

I was going to speak about marketing, 150 people looking at me, waiting, not saying a word, not making any sound at all. I walked from the back of the room, passing everybody. I could see their heads turning.

“There’s the marketing guy”. I could almost hear them talk. If they had said anything, I guess that’s the first sentence they would have said, each and every one.

I entered the stage, opened my backpack and found my MacBook Pro.

I was ready.

I looked at the audience, they looked back at me. They looked excited, ready to listen to what I had to say, listen to my thoughts and the ideas. I was ready, and I was excited as well.

But then, I heard the question that changed my focus.

“Where’s the adapter?” she said. The man from the hotel entered, yes, “where’s the adapter?”

I had received several emails where they told me that they would have an adapter to the projector, and that all I had to bring was my MacBook. The people in the committee was frustrated, I could see it and I could feel it. They said that the people at the hotel had promised them that they would have an adapter ready.

A woman asked me if I could do the presentation without using the projector. I hesitated, I had worked hard for days with the presentation, and now, talk to 150 people without anything to show?

She made a quick decision. “Let’s have a 15 minute break, until we can sort out the technical issues”, she said into the microphone.

At the same time as people walked out, I made a quick decision.

I remembered the Apple store (not an official Apple Store, but Eplehuset, a Norwegian store selling products from Apple) just a few blocks away. I figured that I could run to the store and back in about 10 minutes. I decided to do it.

I ran to the store, found the adapter, and ran back to the hotel. As I entered the stage, all sweaty and out of breath, I discovered that they guy from the hotel had found the adapter.

I wasn’t sure what to think.

I was just staring at it for what seemed to be hours. Most likely it was just a few seconds, because just after I arrived I heard the bell and people started to enter the room once again, ready for my presentation, but probably not as excited.

Friedrich Nietzsche was right; what doesn’t destroy me, makes me stronger. I felt more relaxed after the incident than before.

Have you experienced something similar?

Image: comedy_nose



5 responses to “My Worst Nightmare as a Speaker”

  1. Kai says:

    Hail to Eplehuset!

  2. Kavita Jww says:

    I admire the valuable information you offer in your blog post. Keep up the good work.

  3. Achim says:

    LOL, that’s the reason why I always(!) take any Adapters with me.
    Mini DisplayPort -> VGA and Mini DisplayPort -> DVI is always in my backpack.

    Achim

  4. Joseph Hipolito says:

    Hi sir jens Nice to see this page in here.. this is really helpful to everyone in here and specially to me I got some new idea with this..

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