People will forget what you said
People will forget what you did
But people will never forget how you made them feel.

Maya Angelou


We all learn important life and business lessons differently, this powerful message is one I had to learn from experiencing it myself despite reading this message many times and hearing others offer the advice.

My story is a pretty simple case study really. Picture this. It’s 10pm at a Black Tie Gala Dinner of 580 people, amazing lighting, great entertainment, I’m nominated for the next award so being careful not to drink, sitting at a table with important people and wearing heels (something I seldom do).

Entering the night I was 100% positive Michael Trengove from Code Club Aotearoa (who I am in awe of) would win. The Minister opens the envelop and my name is read out. OMG!!!. All carefully constructed calmness evaporates, I walk onto the stage as Minister Adams talks about this amazing sounding person? walk up to the microphone and …… promptly start crying. My opening words were “I am going to be a girl now and cry”, deep breath and I launch into my story, I will spare you the gory details but it involved childbirth.

Long story short – the lesson here – later that night and all of the next day women, who were all strangers to me, came up and hugged me! all of whom said “I teared up” or “I cried” during your speech. Nobody referred to anything I said, their only takeaway was how they felt.

So whether you are pitching to an investor, meet a stranger in the lift, accepting an award, writing a proposal or chatting at a conference – Tell your story with passion. Leave those strangers with a feeling!

Victoria MacLennan Crying

Thank you to everyone involved in nominating me and to my peers in the industry for this award. I am honoured and humbled. You can read about the other great winners at the NZ IT eXcellence Awards here. The photo above was taken at that moment I started crying, below are David from Draper Cormack who nominated me, and Geoff, OptimalBI‘s man who keeps everything humming along – thank you. Vic.

Vic David Geoff