Don’t forget to turn off your IMs during presentations

We have a board meeting today and I’m reminded about a memorable board meeting a little over a year ago when I was presenting Hunch’s marketing plan.

Paul and I had just gotten a new puppy (warning: video will cause severe nausea to anyone who’s not a dog lover).  She wasn’t fully housetrained yet and wasn’t yet ready for a dog walker, so we were taking turns going home at lunch to walk her and spend some time with her.  Whoever had lunch duty would check in after the walk via a quick phone call or IM. “No mess at home, quick #1 and #2 outside- all good!”… that sort of thing.

So anyway, here I am presenting Hunch’s marketing plan to the Board, projecting charts and recommendations on the wall of one of our conference rooms.  We’re going back and forth between Powerpoint and the Hunch site, so I have a live internet connection.  And all of a sudden, this appeared:

Fortunately everyone has a sense of humor (and some have dogs so they understood the situation perfectly).  So besides getting some serious ribbing for being called “ding dong”, this was no big deal.

But not every situation or audience would have been so accommodating.  And what if the message had said something else?  You know, like: “Are you finished yet with those clueless clowns from the Board of Directors?”

Lesson learned.  Before giving a presentation, turn off your IM clients and any application which might give an uninvited alert.

2 responses to “Don’t forget to turn off your IMs during presentations

  1. Ha. Too true. I’ve had my own run-ins with presentations and inopportune IMs from inappropriate friends.

    So far they’ve done no more than make everyone laugh and lighten the atmosphere in the room.

  2. another good one to turn off: screen savers. pause for too long answering a question and you’ll suddenly find yourself sharing the precious moments of your life with a room full of complete strangers.

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