Sunday, March 6, 2011


The stress of last week, with travel to Seattle and 3 talks at the Rocky Mountain Tech Trifecta yesterday is bleeding off. Starting to feel a little more relaxed now.
The MVP Summit is fun, and it's a good use of some of my time to meet with people, see some technology, make contacts, and build up my Microsoft network for the future. However it's also a bunch of long days, poor sleep in the hotel, and too much alcohol. I never got tipsy, but having 2-3 drinks a day is a lot for me and it wears me out.
To top it off, I left early and started immediately stressing about my keynote for the Rocky Mountain Tech Trifecta. I had the main keynote, and expected 300-400 people there, plus Tia. She's never seen me speak, and so I was nervous about that. It's also a tough way to talk for me since I love feedback from the audience, but in this case it's not interactive. The audience is sitting there, while I talk for 40 minutes and not responding a bunch.
It was a good crowd, and I was on a real stage, standing backstage as they got started and introduced me. I snapped a picture as people were coming in from the stage as I set up my laptop and iPad.

I think between Wed and Friday I rewrote pieces of my keynote 10 times, trying to get a flow working and providing some motivation for people.  As a result, I knew the topic well, but the wording and ordering were a pain to memorize. So I set up my teleprompter on the iPad and used that to keep me going. A small podium, a fixed microphone, and fitting my laptop for Powerpoint and my iPad for prompting was tight.
It went fairly smoothly, and I got to do something on the spur of the moment that is rare. It's not often you get on stage with a captive audience for something like a keynote and also have loved ones in the audience I've done three keynotes in my life and this was the first time this happened. So just before I used a short story from my life that included Tia, I stopped and took a moment to thank her publicly for all the support I've gotten. It was cool and the audience applauded for a moment.
I felt like a stumbled a few times, but overall I think the keynote went well. I got some nice complements all day long for it, and both my sessions later were busy and worked out well. It was a good day, but full of stress. I was very glad to get home last night and be able to unwind a bit.

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