When we do keynote presentations I have a ‘rider’. That sounds a little prima donna but most of it is technical, and the rest has a couple of simple requests like ‘a bottle of still water at room temperature please’. A professional speaker doesn’t want anything chilled.
On Tuesday, we presented at the London Business Forum. If you don’t know about the LBF then check out their website.
In our rider, I point out that I’m a simple bloke with simple tastes and I’m not asking for anything quirky like ‘a bowl of M&M’s with all the blue ones taken out’.
Arriving at BAFTA on Tuesday morning the team at the London Business Forum handed me a bag. A goodie bag. And in it?  A big bag of M&M’s – ALL BLUE!
The message was simple. We’ve read your rider, the M&M thing is fun, we’re fun, here’s the exact opposite of what you asked for. BRILLIANT!
I thought about it and smiled all day.
On the train heading home we enjoyed some very blue M&M’s.
I’m writing about it now.
That gift was more than a token. It showed the giver wanted to impress, it showed they cared, it showed they had the same fun values as we do. That bag of blue M&M’s strengthened our connection.

Who could you give a creative gift to? What would it be? When will you give it?

Go on, do it now.

Be Brilliant!

PS For those who wondered if I had affiliate deals for my ‘17 places to eat drink and stay‘ blog last week, I can assure you I don’t. And M&M’s have paid me nothing for this one – but if they do want to send us something….


  1. January 19th 2017 by June

    My first response to the Blue M&Ms gift would have been “hear we go again some one has not taken the time to read my email fully”; not least because that happens so often, but hay I think your way of thinking is much more fun. It makes methink; I should be a less sceptical and take life less serious

  2. August 3rd 2017 by Keith Byrne

    I read that Van Halen’s contract clause stipulating that they have a bowl of M&M’s with the brown ones removed was to ensure that the promoter had indeed, read the contract. When they arrived at a venue, and found brown M&M’s in the bowl, they knew that other, more serious things might go wrong, and so better prepare!

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