In June I sponsored a tech startup demo showcase in NYC. The sponsorship fee entitled me to pitch my services at the event, a major benefit given that I'm usually pretty good on my feet in front of a crowd. 

I invested time in preparation, devising an ingenious, out-of-the-box two minute pitch that utilized humor to drive home a clear message. Within 15 seconds of starting my talk, I could tell that I had totally missed the mark. I flopped big time…the kind of flop where half the audience tunes you out while the other half gawks at you with disbelief and pity.

On the train ride home, I thought about what I would say to a client who had this experience. Here’s what I came up with: 

  • Everyone fails sometimes
  • This was a small audience and a small sponsorship fee, making this a “small” failure 
  • If we never fail, it means we’re not taking enough risks

I felt better after listening to myself. I’m grateful to have had the experience: I learned from it, got a dose of humility, and gathered the perfect amount of material for a Mind Mint.