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  • Cathy Sweeney

“Leave a Tip,” and Other Words of Advice

Fear of speaking, it is rumored, is one of the most common fear of individuals.  Those who know me realize that this is not a problem for me.  Fear of heights?  Definitely.  Public Speaking?  Fearless.

So I was intrigued when I listened to a “Nerdist” podcast interview of Billy Crystal.  Crystal was telling a story of one of the best pieces of advice he had received.  It came from Jack Rollins, a well known producer, who was planning to attend Crystal’s show at a nightclub that weekend.  Crystal determined that his stage show must be taken up a notch, so he wrote a new show, about 20 minutes of what he considered to be ‘hilarious material.  A knock out show.’   He presented the new material, blew the audience away, and confidently approached Mr. Rollins after to show to ask his opinion.

“I didn’t like it,” said Rollins.  “Are you kidding?  I killed it out there!” replied Crystal.  Turns out the material was funny, and did entertain the audience.  But here’s what Rollins added:  “Leave a tip,” he said.  In summary, Rollins suggested that with each of Crystal’s shows, he should strive to include something personal, something of ‘himself’ in the dialogue, that helps the members of the audience connect and remember him.

“Leave a tip,” he said.  Share some of what you have.  Take a risk and get to know your audience.


These days, we think of a ‘tip’ as that ‘thank you’ we leave behind to others for doing a good job.  It’s a monetary ‘thank you,’ not one where we have to risk anything.  It’s almost invisible, since many times we are out the door before the wait staff even sees the amount.

Rollins’ advice, to take a risk and leave something of yourself, got me thinking:  How did Jesus ‘tip?’  After one of the gatherings, he left a tip of fish and bread, with enough to serve 5,000 people.   That certainly was a tip to remember.  And with each sermon, he left a bit of himself with the audience:  Matthew 6:7-13, where Jesus teaches the Lord’s Prayer; in fact, the entire book of Matthew provides ‘tips’ where Jesus leaves bits of his heart with us, every time he speaks.  What a great model.

How about you?  When you are speaking, do you take a risk and share something about your nature with the audience?  Do you interact with those who are different?  “Leave a tip,” Rollins said.   Leave a tip, and make an impact on someone’s life, I add.

In all things, Love.


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