Mon. Jul 4th, 2022

I fell from the stage during a presentation in February 2011.
I was presenting The Presentation with The Mixed Feedback, which I also gave in Washington last year, about how social media can be used to help with projects for PMI’s UK Chapter. Although it was a wonderful venue, it was intimidating to know that I was sharing the podium with the Prime Minister. Thomson Reuters hosts many important media events in their auditorium.
The auditorium’s stage is free-standing and doesn’t touch the wall. I was too short to be able to see the podium and my laptop so I stood at the side. This meant that I couldn’t see my laptop screen so I had to take a step back every now and again to review my notes, which were displayed via PowerPoint’s Presenter mode.
But I took too many steps back.
My balance was slipping and time stopped. I like to think that I fell with the grace and grace of a gazelle. Given that I was wearing a pencil skirt, I didn’t want my back to be covered in cables. I focused my attention on the gap in the equipment behind the stage for a split second before I fell over completely.
“Lovely venue, but there is a big hole there,” I joked as I walked up the steps to regain the podium. “OK, I was talking to the geography of your team …”
I don’t recall reading anything about this in my favorite book on public speaking. So I pretend everything was fine while actually cringing with embarrassment.
They will at least remember me, even if they don’t know what I was talking about. Note to self: Next time, get up on a stool and stop talking.

By Adam