Have you ever attended a meeting/workshop that sounded great and yet when the speakers started talking you wondered why you were there? Well, that was me recently – I had signed up for a seminar about the new tax code and it was marketed to “small business, entrepreneurs and enterprises …” As a small business owner, I figured it would be a great way to learn a bit more about how this could possibly affect my 2017 tax return and business budgeting going forward.
The speakers started talking – they seemed very knowledgeable but when they started reciting tax codes and percentages and talking in “accountant speak” – I wasn’t the only one in the room whose eyes started glazing over. They spoke at a level above the majority in attendance and the slides were quite cluttered and not very easy to follow. I know it’s easy to stay in your comfort zone and speak in industry jargon – but not when the audience is made up of those outside your industry.
I took some notes but mostly glanced around to see if others seemed as confused as I was. I didn’t leave hoping that the Q&A session at the end might be more relevant to my level of business.
No such luck – I finally bowed out. It really was a waste of my morning and I felt frustrated and annoyed.
As a meeting planner and a speaker, I need to think about this all the time. Understand your audience. Prep your speakers. Adapt and change.
I still need to do more research into the tax code and see how it will affect my taxes and budgeting, but I did get content for a blog!