On Reaching Out

23rd April 2020 – I was invited to deliver a guest address for EU Business School Munich.

The session was also open to students from the Barcelona & Geneva campuses.

My topic was: ‘Building Unconventional Careers – Taking Total Ownership of Your Journey’.

Right in the heat of global pandemic when everything was shut down, uncertainty was looming large, and morale had taken a huge beating, I was going through the added pressure of really delivering value to the audience there. I wanted the talk to be worth their time. I wanted each attendee to feel like they took back something.

But, none of us were prepared to handle a situation like Covid19.

I almost had a brain freeze for a day while preparing for the talk.

To tide over this, I genuinely needed the guidance of a Master Oogway of delivering keynotes. The Yoda of this craft.

The one person who came to my mind at that juncture, was my friend and former 5 time ICC Umpire of the Year, Simon Taufel. I immediately messaged him and he generously advised me. And just like that, a sense of calm prevailed.

Here’s what he shared:
A) The session is for the audience, not you. Focus on what they want/need.
B) Both style & content are important.
C) Technique with speaking and stories are equally important.
D) We get better with every opportunity.
E) Be yourself. Enjoy it.

Eventually, I figured the content I wanted to cover. So, as a token of my gratitude, I made Simon a part of my presentation! I had a great time giving the talk and from the feedback I got later, it was equally well received too.

Here’s what I realized: It’s okay to ask for help. Doesn’t matter how seasoned you are at your craft, reaching out for help and being vulnerable about something you don’t know, requires courage.

Also, catch Simon’s episode on my podcast – Jamsters. Subscribe & stay tuned.

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