Transperia Group, Inc.
Transformational Experiences That Drive Business Results

Never Get Too Cocky

September 21, 2008 · Print This Article
Posted by Mark Bennardo

Remember that great clip from Star Wars (the original) where Luke Skywalker shoots down his first TIE starfighter?  All excited and a little proud, Skywalker turns to Han Solo and exclaims, “Got him!  I got him!”  Solo responds with a cool, “That’s great, kid…don’t get cocky.”

This past week I was producing a national conference.  While it wasn’t a wild show, by any stretch of the imagination, it did have its share of complexities, from a production stand point:  lots of cues, live music, video roll-ins, music bumps, interactive elements and more.

Just before the last session began, an attendee came up to the production booth to thank us.  He said that he’d been to two other similar shows in the past few months and neither of them had the high level of production values, excellence and quality that we had shown.

I thanked him and asked what made the difference.  He said,

“You know, the basics.  Hitting the cues right. Mics being turned on when they are supposed to be.  Tight transitions.”

I thanked him again for his kind words, then passed on his appreciation to my crew.

“That’s right,” I thought to myself, “We’re good.  We’re not like all those other hacks out there.”

Wouldn’t you know it, but we blew two small cues in that last session.  Nothing big and disastrous, and nothing that I think the audience would have noticed.  Just small things that can make the experience a little more enjoyable.  Or not.

We can never lose focus—even when we are confident of our abilities and have a proven track record.  Every little cue is important.  The moment we begin to rest on our laurels is the moment the unexpected can sneak up on us and take us down a notch.

Thanks for the reminder, Han.

2 Responses to “Never Get Too Cocky”

  1. evan mcbroom Says:

    Mark – i was at the conference and I agree – y’all did a great job. I missed the last session…so I missed the two missed cues. So, in my book, it was PERFECT. Keep it up Luke!

  2. dana sherbondy Says:

    Yes Mark… Pride comes before the fall. It is a challenge to balance humility, trust, reliance on God and confidence in one’s own ability to act and be people of influence (like Bill’s current series). Without confidence, people do not show initiative. Without confidence, people do not reach out, speak out and step beyond themselves.

    So when does confidence lead to pride? I would venture to say that pride is in comparison. Confidence says “I can do this.” Pride says, “I can do this better than you.”

    Some say that its not bragging if you can do it. I think Michael Jordan was a decent example of confidence. I don’t remember seeing him talking trash before games. He let the scores do the talking. Certainly, he was glad in his achievements and did speak about them.

    Maybe a more recent example is better. In the Olympics swimming, the French team bragged about beating the Americans. The American said nothing, worked hard, and won in the pool. Even afterward, they did not bad mouth or put down the French (that I know of).

    But in all cases, it is always good to strive for excellence – which is what you do. Nice work.

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