Ever have an awkward professional moment? MIstakes which make you cringe?
That time I pocket-dialed an important client in Amsterdam at 2:00 am his time. He responded with grace. I’m careful about my phone and other technology and consider myself adept in those areas. And yet, who is perfect?
That time a neighborhood kid screamed and his mom hollered back while I was in a conference call. My windows were wide open. Nothing amiss other than a boy who wanted to play instead of doing his chores. I work hard to control my professional presence, but it was such a nice day…
That time when a major athlete called about a potential speech for the Hall of Fame of his sport. I had never heard of him. Egg on my face, to be sure. I’m well-read and generally up to date, but I can’t know everything.
Just last year, I received a call from a massively popular musician whose songs I never heard — ouch! I didn’t pretend I knew his work. When I did hear it, I thought it was awful and overrated. Sure, I wish the call came from Sir Paul, Bob, or the Boss (none of whom need my help), but my job is to serve my clients.
If you are a consultant for a range of private clients, these things happen. Sometimes, it is a misstep we caused. Other times, it is just one of those things. However these events happen, they can be embarrassing. These days, if something does happen, I roll with it. If these are my worst mistakes in life, I’m in great shape.
I’ll strive to be blunder-free, knowing fully well that some awkwardness yet awaits. In the big and small picture, it is no big deal.
If we ever meet, ask me to tell you the story about my fly being as open as the front gate in front of 30 people. We’ll both laugh.
Roll with it.