It was a meeting planner's nightmare and a motivational speaker's golden opportunity.
A large healthcare company had their annual conference all planned and ready to go, when it happened. Three days before the conference started, their opening keynote speaker had a family emergency and had to pull out. They called a former speaker whom they had used and loved many times before, and when she couldn't do it on such short notice, she recommended me. And that's when I got the call. Friday afternoon. For a Monday morning presentation.
Flying into action, my operations manager, the Amazing Kate Holgate drew up agreements and handled logistics while I found out what they needed me to do and how I could best serve their objectives. Transportation was arranged, packing ensued, PowerPoint created, and emails were flying back and forth with everyone copied on everything. And then I saw it. The email with the Five Most Brilliant Words in Crisis Management. It was from Kate to the meeting planner and it addressed the unspoken but very evident stress that the meeting planner was under. She wrote,
"Breathe easy. We've got this."
The response from the meeting planner was swift and sincere. She thanked Kate again and again. She copied her boss on the email from Kate pointing out how FANTASTIC her comment was and how grateful she was to be working with us. And during my time at the event, the meeting planner must have told me at least a half dozen times how much she appreciated us, citing Kate's words yet again as one of the reasons why.
Truly brilliant words, right? Could you use them when you are endeavoring to solve a problem, quell a crisis, or reduce someone's stress? I know I surely can – and will. Thank you, Kate Holgate!!!