Wednesday, January 27, 2010

i, robot

i made it home late last night. my flight was delayed (big shock) but i was very glad to make it home safely. i'm pretty tired at the moment but i wanted to have a chance to share with you some of my thoughts about the last day or so before i get some sleep.

after my presentation, i did a lot of processing while i was in the vegas airport.

earlier in the day, i had bought a pecan tart from bouchon bakery as my "treat" for finishing my presentation......


and dug into it once i was at the airport....


while i was digging into my tart, i did a mental post-mortem of the day. the presentation went well. i was slightly worried as the audience of a hundred or so got all worked up and rowdy during the presentation before mine. one of the guys in the audience turned to me and said "i bet that you love the fact that you are up next."

fun times. fun times.

i did my presentation and then, like the majority of my sessions, i ensured that there was time for discussion. this is when i leave the podium and typically walk among the audience and attendees while i answer questions. i find that this encourages discussion and also sets a more personal tone for the discussion portion of my sessions....even when there are so many people in the room. despite my dislike of being the center of attention, i understand what my responsibility is for these sort of presentations and sessions. i want to remove that formal barrier and ensure that as many people feel connected and heard as much as possible. i also realize that my role is not just to provide information and analysis that they can use....but i'm also a rep from corporate headquarters...and they need to feel like their thoughts are truly heard.

when DH asked me this morning how it went yesterday, i said that it went well....but that...like usual....how a lot of people come up to me after i present and seem to think i am a lot more more approachable than i really am. DH just laughed and said "ahhhh ms [enter foodie hunter's real last name], what am i going to do with you?"

my response was "i know what my responsibility is. no one felt slighted. i was on my best behavior. but i do find it odd that people seem to think i am very approachable after i do a presentation. it is this odd phenomena. the president of the north american region actually gave me a hug. A HUG."

even though our discussion was on the phone, i could tell that DH almost bust a gut laughing.

just to be clear, i don't see the hug as inappropriate or anything like that. it was just a surprise. i am not usually seen as a "hugable" person to folks that aren't among the foodie hunter friends and family list.

well, it is odd...to be approached by people who i have no idea who they are....well, of course, i knew who the president of the US region was...but there were a lot people that approached me after my presentation....like even when i went to the bathroom for gawd's sake....and there is this assumption of familiarity on their side. sometimes they just want to chit-chat....or just introduce themselves. this is not gender specific btw. sometimes they feel comfortable enough to share the oddest things, like their thoughts on some of the corporate executive staff. there is one member of the exec staff that i have a tremendous amount of respect for and heard comments about how they think he is a "robot" or something similar.

not like this alpha exec needs any defending by the likes of the foodie hunter, but i did think that was quite unfair....and felt the need to point out how he is responsible for some of the most innovative initiatives coming out of the company....and how i have always found him to be very personable and supportive of my work....and how i have seen and heard that he genuinely cares about, listens, and takes time to discuss things with folks internally and even with everyday users of our products. he doesn't have to do that (particularly given what his role is), but he does.

i suppose when it comes down to it, i get annoyed when people think that super driven analytical types have no emotions.

because, let me tell you, we definitely have emotions.

just because certain folks don't see them on the surface doesn't mean that they aren't there.

just a bit of food for thought.

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