Never Blame the Audience

Everybody’s had a bad day at work. Usually that doesn’t involve a room of 2,000 people watching you have a bad day.

As an entertainer it’s easy to tell yourself that it was the crowd’s fault. They were too drunk. They were too busy texting. They were too this. Too that.

Whose fault is it?

Yours.

One of the most valuable pieces of advice I got from a fellow performer is “never blame the audience.”

Anyone can do the easy shows. It takes a true professional to pull through a rough environment with a successful show.

How do you get to that level?

Never blame the audience.

Blaming the audience allows you to ignore what you did (or didn’t do) that you could have to have a successful performance. If you have an off night, ask yourself what you could have done to avoid whatever problem derailed you.

Did you focus on the one person texting and forget about the 1,999 who were having a good time? Did you give the mic to someone who was completely wasted?

You’re responsible.

As the performer, your job is to take control of the experience for the audience so they feel comfortable putting their attention in your hands. They have to feel secure in your leadership before they can relax enough to enjoy whatever you’re about to lead them through.

Your Company

I can’t tell you how many CEOs, owners, and upper management folks blame poor results on consumers, crappy sales people.

Everyone but themselves and their poor leadership.

Have an amazing product that you know will change lives, but nobody’s buying? It’s your fault.

It’s your job to find where the breakdown in communication is, and fix it.

It all boils down to communication.

Your focus is not on finding the solution. You’re busy blaming every one else which allows you to continue ignoring how your website is difficult to navigate. Your sales process feels like a scam. Your employees are checked out because you’ve shown them you don’t value them.

Whatever the issue, it’s your responsibility to find a solution, get the results you want, and move on.

How do you fix it?

Take an honest look at how you run your business, and that’s difficult to do. Sometimes you’re too close to a problem to find the solution.

(Or you don’t know you’re looking at the problem when you’re staring it in the face.)

That’s why it’s important to get an outsider’s perspective. (Good) performers have directors. They have a whole creative team to provide feedback. They probably have a mentor or coach, too.

Who is in your mastermind? Brain trust? Advisory board?

Find a team of high quality people who can help you take responsibility for how you’ve been doing things, and help you find better ways of doing them in the future.

It’s the only way things will get better is if you know better.

Then do better.

Remember. Never blame the audience. It’s on you.