I had an absolute blast teaching a really fun Washington DC presentation class in September of 2017. The presentation class actually had a pretty funny (and embarrassing) start for me. Some of you may know Fiona Dawson who typically teaches our Washington DC Fearless Presentations ® classes. One of our clients hired her to conduct a private class for their employees, so I flew in from Dallas to teach the class in her place. Now, I’ve been to Washington DC dozens of times, and I’m very familiar with the area. In fact, I was the one who set up our office on I Street a couple years ago. Well, about six months ago, our landlord sold the building, and our our local team moved the office about a mile away. Keep in mind, I’ve never been to the new office.
So, I booked a hotel within walking distance of the new office address. I arrived late afternoon the day before this class. Since I had some time, I figured I’d take a walk to see the office in person, but when I punched the address into my phone, it was showing me being about 4 miles away. I started to get angry, because I specifically picked this hotel to make sure I could walk to the office in the morning, and now I’d have to get ready earlier and catch an Uber. But, in the grander scheme of things, it wasn’t a really big deal. I just sat my alarm clock about 30 minutes earlier.
The morning of the class, I got up early. Caught my ride to the office. And, even though it took me a good 30 minutes to get through DC traffic, I arrived at the new office about an hour before the class start time. Of course, I have no key to the place, and the elevator wouldn’t take me to our floor before 8:30 without a key, so I patiently waited in the lobby. I was a little concerned, because by 8:30 AM, I hadn’t seen anyone from our company, and no class members had arrived. (There is always a couple of people who arrive really early.) The elevators finally unlocked, and I made my way to our floor. However, when the elevator doors opened, I didn’t see our logo or furniture. It hit me very quickly that I was in the wrong place, and my class members were likely already showing up in the right place!
Panic sat in really quickly. I double-checked the address. Turns out that I left off the NW at the end of the address, so I was… wait for it… about 4.1 miles away from the office. Luckily, a passing cab saw me coming out of the business and moved quickly through traffic to get me to the correct address. I ended up arriving for my own class about 2 minutes after the start time.
It was so embarrassing. It was particularly embarrassing when I mentioned tip number four in the 10 ways to reduce public speaking fear. That tip says that if you are the speaker, make sure to arrive early so you aren’t distracted or pressured before your speech.
Man is that tip true!
Because of the funny start, though, the group was really able to break the ice early. So, the class was very helpful for all of us! If you’d like to participate in one of our classes, visit our class schedule page at https://www.fearlesspresentations.com/washington-dc-public-speaking-class/