In less than a week I’ve twice been part of a crowd giving a heartfelt standing and loud ovation. On Saturday it was for Take That at the O2, Gary, Mark and Howard put on such a fantastic show – there might only be three of them these days but show wise they killed it. And the audience let them know it.
Last night, at The Barbican I was privileged to be part of the Apps for Good awards. After the winners were announced, all the finalists took to the stage and were given the loudest and most emotional standing ovation.
This morning it’s interesting for me to reflect on both experiences. With Take That it’s a kind of given, and as you’d expect the boys all revelled in it, took it for granted and knew it was well warranted (stunning, stunning show by the way). Last night’s students not only had no expectation of such an experience they had no reference point to understand why an audience of business professionals would simultaneously stand and cheer. Their faces did remind me of those Britain’s Got Talent contestants that the audience take to their heart – they were amazed, grateful and inspired. It was very cool – unfortunately I got something in my eye at that point and couldn’t see so well. Hopefully they felt like rock stars! What I liked about the whole experience was that it celebrated the winners – sometimes there’s too much shying away from having winners when kids are involved. Well, that’s life, especially in business, sometimes you win the deal and lots of times you don’t. But those that didn’t win stood on the stage and understood what it felt like to be really appreciated by some of Britain’s leading IT and business professionals. You could see the power of it.
For me, that final standing ovation totally captured the Apps for Good holistic approach that takes technology and young people and strives to make the individuals, their school, their community and the world a better place. It was pretty awe inspiring.
Apps UK Head of Markets, Nive Bhagat, one of the ‘dragons’ judging the finalists said, “This was a superb event! I enjoyed the presentations very much, not just the ones I judged but all the teams in the marketplace. The enthusiasm of the students was absolutely infectious and I was amazed at the depth of thinking besides the stunning confidence! I was buzzing long after I left with several stickers on my bag!”
Michelle Perkins, Director Schools Outreach Programme