02 September 2007

Social Entrepreneurs: Kiva on Oprah; Matt Flannery's Take

Over at Kiva Chronicles on Social Edge, Matt Flannery has an impassioned post in reaction to Kiva's appearance on Oprah, which is scheduled to broadcast on Tuesday. Ever wondered what it would be like to be on Oprah? How about sharing the stage with Bill Clinton? Imagine Matt and Jessica getting a two-fer. Here's a snippet of Matt's take on the taping. It's worth following the link to the full description.

We were in the audience. The show was focused on President Clinton's new book -- Giving. We assumed our seats in the front row. The President and Ms. Winfrey entered to great applause. There we were, in the front row, about arm's length away as the interview began.

We were in the 5th segment. I think that's right. The President and Oprah ushered us through 4 segments of emotional conversation and specials. I could almost touch them. Even so, it felt like I was watching a movie -- however more frightening because the characters could call on you at any time. You better be ready.

I couldn't pay perfect attention. About 45 minutes into the show, the Kiva segment began. A tape rolled highlighting Anne Brown, an artisan in Seattle who lent money to a seamstress in Ecuador. I didn't watch too closely because I didn't want to be too emotional as the biggest interview in my life would begin.

Then she called on us. Our most likely scenario was that Oprah would focus on Jessica, given that is a women-centric show. We were wrong -- she focused on me. How much has Kiva loaned so far? How does it make you feel? How long does it take for an entrepreneur to get funded? I could answer these questions in my sleep. However, they came out in slow motion. I didn't make any big mistakes. I was serviceable, not incredible. Since that time, I've replayed the answers in my head, second guessing every word. I'll probably never get the chance to address that many people again in my life. Thinking about it too much can drive you crazy.

She turned to Jess and asked about her inspiration. Jess got emotional. It was an emotional moment. She delivered a heart felt account of how we began Kiva. It was one of the more moving parts of the show.

The President and Ms. Winfrey spent the next few minutes talking about the power of the Internet and "the Kiva model." Watching this was truly surreal. If you had told me a year ago that I would watch these two people discussing Kiva in front of millions on TV, I would have laughed. I cannot tell you how ridiculous it would have seemed. It still seems imaginary.

Here's the link to Matt's full story: Kiva on Oprah

We'll be watching Tuesday.

1 comment:

iinnovate said...

Congrats to Kiva and Oprah!

iinnovate also just posted an interview with the Flannerys