The heart of tech is coming to the heart of the Mediterranean. Join TNW in València this March 🇪🇸

This article was published on March 23, 2018

“A shot of whiskey,” according to Boris

“A shot of whiskey,” according to Boris
This week I saw an awful video of a young politician just starting out who had a blackout the moment he needed to present his new political party. It’s both hilarious and painful to watch. It’s in Dutch but that doesn’t matter. His body language speaks for itself.

Now, I’ve seen hundreds of presentations from nervous speakers, both young and old, at our many events around the world. I’ve seen people stutter, sweat, get angry or confused, and have felt their frustration as their moment to shine turned into one of embarrassment.

At one of our events, the founder and CEO of a billion-dollar company was about to go on stage. About 20 minutes before I decided to have a chat with him. I often try to get people to relax and uplift their mood before they go on stage. It helps. This person seemed tenser than the others, and I asked if he was nervous. He nodded, stared at his shoes, and asked me if I could do him a favor. His request was if we could get him a shot of whiskey. It was 10 in the morning, so it was an odd request, but I asked someone on the team to run out and find a liquor store. They were back within 10 minutes and I showed him the bottle.

He laughed out loud and admitted he had only been joking, but the fact that I went through the trouble to help him amused and relaxed him. We both laughed, I poured us two glasses, and we toasted to a good speech. He performed great and we high-fived when he walked off stage.

I’m telling you this story to make you aware of how nerve-racking being on stage can be. The best speakers, the most successful CEOs, and the funniest comedians can go through terrible fits of anxiety and insecurity just before they have to go on stage. Now imagine being on one of our stages, with thousands of people watching and tens of thousands of life-videos streaming, and having to give your best performance. No pressure, just make it insanely great.

This is why I’m usually backstage at our events. I know that feeling, and I know what to say to comfort people, without breaking their concentration. Some people just need a hug. Others need a drink. Others just need a “you can do it!” and an “I’ve got your back!” before they go on.

I hope that when you’re at our event and see a speaker walk on stage you will remember this. Give them a louder applause then you normally would. I know it helps.

What we’ve been talking about this week:

? You can now own a golden iPhone X with Putin’s face on it for the low low price of $4,700. I’ll take 10.

? Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey said that Bitcoin will become the world’s single currency within the next 10 years.

? This guy abused his smartphone’s battery for years. Now he doesn’t charge it ’til 100%.

? YouTube now lets you live stream straight from your webcam. I’m sure only good things will come from this.

? San Francisco’s de Young Fine Arts Museum banned Instagram selfies. It’s not going to work.

Something cool I found…

I bought this recently. My tip: immediately throw out the fluid that’s in the machine and replace it with high-density smoke. The effect will be immediate and amazing. It’s a GREAT gift to bring to any party.. just be aware of smoke detectors or it will be a short one.

I almost forgot…

Our TNW Conference in Amsterdam is fast-approaching, and you won’t want to miss our speaker line-up. Have you bought your ticket yet?

Bye for now!

Want our newsletters in your inbox? Subscribe down here:

Related Articles