Thursday, February 23, 2006


Faced down my nemesis today at a seminar.

Which is to say I spoke on a topic which I had spoken on before at another seminar, and at which the reviews couldn't be worse. I SUCKED at it the last time I spoke on this topic. The only thing the audience didn't do was throw things at me.

I could say it's a difficult topic because it covers a diverse range of issues, most of the current legislation in vogue doesn't actually apply here but everyone keeps getting worried so people want to hear about this topic.

The difficulty is making it relevant. Keeping it real. Nobody really wants to hear about the SOX regulations and yet they feel they need to hear about it because it might be relevant (it isn't - it doesn't apply to companies which are not listed in the US or which have derivatives listed in the US). But the people want to know. Oh well.

Armed with a completely written-out speech and the Ghosts of Seminars Past, I took on the same topic today before a mix of lawyers, accountants and business people. The mike didn't work properly, the thing to move the slides didn't work at all and I was stressed out and showing it. Somehow I came to the end of my speech. Then stared at a room full of big big eyes. And then went back to my seat. Silence and crickets. The chairperson said, "Well, let's take a coffee break. Be back in 20 mins." And then there was applause. Soft at first, then louder. Then everyone filed out for coffee and chit chat.

For the rest of today (and possibly the next week until I get the feedback statistics) I'll be wondering if:

1. the applause was for (a) me; (b) the chairperson; (c) the coffee; (d) politeness;
2. I sucked again;
3. it would be possible for me to break into Asia Business Forum's office and burn all the feedback forms; or
4. I sucked again.

Received the feedback forms for the previous seminar and bent my boss' ear about it something fierce. The seminar organiser called to say I had gotten the highest rating of all the speakers.

20 "Excellent", 10 "Very Good" and 7 "Good/ Fair".

A total of 37 feedback forms.

I wanted to ask the seminar person who were the 7 who gave me the "Good/ Fair". Also, where they live (and will they be missed if they stopped showing up for work). To be fair, I was happy about it for about 5 minutes before the voices in my head pointed out that 7 out of 37 is almost one-quarter. Twenty-five percent of the participants thought I was Good/ Fair.

Which really means Average.

The boss says my personality type should consider a progressive reduction in speaking engagements where feedback documentation is involved.

Which is his usual polite way of saying that he thinks I'm psycho.


At 12:37 PM, Blogger gremlin said...

congrats! you did it! excellent, whoa! man, this is for you. I would never engage myself in any of this(read "get into this kinda shit") if I can help it. it gives you a high - the whole world can tell that. like boob-feeding does that to me :) you go girl! any time for last minute lunch 'case I call for one? make sure ah. dun make any lunch plans without consulting me ;p

At 1:41 PM, Blogger HairyDonut said...

So irritating. I'm not even having lunch today as was stood up last minute.

At 8:01 PM, Blogger valkyrie said...

focus on the 'Excellent' ones! 20X that is really something! :)

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