When you're in business for yourself, I think you need to be comfortable with everything you do. You need to satisfy all those little niggles to keep the passion for what you do alight. Sometimes good enough isn't quite good enough, and you have to go the extra mile.
Recently, I experienced one of those horrible life episodes everyone dreads. I was running a full day workshop for a group of 25+ delegates. The presentation was very video, website and image heavy so I was reliant on the internet running smoothly. I knew I was taking a risk, and to that end I checked and double checked the venue could provide everything I needed. I was repeatedly reassured it could. But on the day, the venue and its facilities let me down. Neither the internet or sound worked. After two grueling hours of technical shenanigans and a change of room, we got internet access, albeit rather slow. And it was a pure stroke of luck that one of the delegates had speakers in their car.
I was ill prepared for technical failure but had no choice but to make the best of a bad situation. Supported by a group of very understanding delegates, I soldiered on. To tell the truth, the technological mishaps completely threw me off balance. And that affected the rest of the presentation because it messed with my confidence. Starting a workshop two hours late wreacked havoc with my already tight timetable. I had to speed through content and skip some things altogether.
The worst thing was that it affected my audience. Frankly, I really wanted to impress them. Instead everything got off to a bad start, and they had to suffer the consequences of a hideous stop start effect. The presentation just didn't flow and my meticulously planned workshop fell rather flat. Despite everything, I got positive feedback. But then I can't help but wonder how much more valuable the presentation would have been if everything had gone smoothly.
At this point, I could just walk away. The audience was understanding. I survived the day. I got paid.
But I felt I needed to do something extra to compensate for how things turned out. I felt I needed to go the extra mile. Driving home that day, feeling rather sorry for myself, I hatched a plan. In addition to an e-book and the presentation slides, every attendee has received an invitation to view this series of blogs, designed to clarify and provide key reference material to any points we missed, or had to zip through. At the same time, the blogs are valuable to other readers. I figured using the tools we talked about during the presentation made perfect sense.
Does anyone else have the 'go the extra mile' approach in business? Care to share an example or two of how you have gone the extra mile?
Here is the complete 'Introduction to social media' series:
- An introduction to social media
- Traditional media versus social media
- Why social media won’t go away
- Understanding inbound and outbound marketing
- Overview of blogs, Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn
- Overview of YouTube, Pinterest and Google+
- 10 social media video case studies
- Linking it all together; social media, Search Engine Optimisation and Return on Investment