I had just gotten back from my Lake Powell trip late the night before and I was looking forward to having my Sunday afternoon after church got over to unpack my suitcases and take a nap to recover from our long trip home. My plan was to spend all day Monday writing a talk and getting a powerpoint presentation ready for the big keynote speech I was scheduled to give on Tuesday for the Americas Conference on Information Systems (AMCIS) and their 3,000 registered attendees.
I was just heading out the door to church when the phone rang. I didn’t recognize the out of state number and would usually let it go right to voicemail but for some reason I felt compelled to answer the call. The voice on the other end of the call said they were checking to see if I’d like to test out the video conferencing system before my big keynote presentation tomorrow morning. TOMORROW MORNING?!! I had it down on my calendar on Tuesday morning!!!??? There had to be some mistake!!!
Sure enough there was….and it was my mistake….I’d somehow moved the talk to the wrong day on my calendar…about that moment panic set in…both for me and for the person on the other end of the phone call… What was I going to do??!!
My brain jumped into fix-it mode and I quickly apologized to the person on on the phone for having scared them and gave my assurance it was fine and I would be ready to give the keynote Monday morning. I let them know I’d be able to jump on and test the video conferencing system after church. Then I hung up the phone and panicked!
I said many a prayer at church yesterday while trying my best to listen to the words being shared from the pulpit as my mind kept racing through what I would put in my speech. There would definitely not be any Sunday nap for me as the rest of my day was spent putting together a talk and a presentation deck for my speech…not only would their be no nap but there wouldn’t be much sleep that night either.
By this morning I had a speech ready and slides prepared even if they ended up being different slides then I had intended to use for my talk. While i gave the talk via online video conference I was only able to see my presentation deck on the screen and not any faces of the participants in the conference….perhaps that was a blessing in disguise given how quickly I’d thrown the talk together ;)…. I’m hoping all the extra prayers I’d said in church helped me to make at least a few of the participants smile and feel they benefited from what was shared.
…Some days you have no choice but to operate on a wing and a prayer…today was one of those days…
~Amy Rees Anderson (author of the book “What Awesome Looks Like: How To Excel in Business & Life” )