| Fashion

Networking… such a Dirty Word!

Yesterday… after a power cut at work which showed no signs of dissipating pretty much ruled me completely defunct – no computer, no emails, no phone calls (someone buy me an iphone already…) and my assistant looked a little too happy at the prospect of being sent home at 2pm… I whipped her and her DM’s off with me to Pure London for the afternoon!

Originally penciled in my diary as a Tuesday ‘let’s waste my day galavanting around a trade show to avoid actual work’ activity, I was a little disappointed to only be going for the afternoon, but I figured that I couldn’t sit about reading magazines for the rest of my day and take the following one out of the office as well… that might be a little work shy.
So as it was – I had to hit it on Monday afternoon! This wasn’t ideal… first of all I looked like a complete skank. I had been talking to ginger boy on skype till the early hours, had slept in in the morning, didn’t have time to do anything remotely decent to my hair, put on appropriate make up or choose an outfit that was anything other than lazy and had power walked to the office in the rain. In my defence I didn’t think I would be going anywhere or meeting anyone important… but I guess I should know by now that in the life of fashion – you really must always dress to impress (or at least keep a change of shoes and a duplicate make up bag at work for such occasions as this) I’m just not very good at that… So I rocked up looking like some sort of disheveled high school drop out rather than the fashion PR professional that I needed to be… trying to persuade potential new brands that our company is the one that can take them to the top of the fashion radar when you are wearing a tatty Primark scarf and a Dennis the Menace style stripy T is no mean feat. Actually my Dennis the Menace T-shirt isn’t so bad… it’s new and I feel bad dissing it so soon… but paired with the untidiness of my general appearance it didn’t look it’s best…
Secondly – my brand spanking new business cards with my newly promoted job title which I ordered last week, still hadn’t turned up… so I was forced to take the older and slightly dirtier ones that didn’t even have my contact details on them and had been festering at the bottom of my handbag since my last networking occasion. Not only did I run out after circulating the first room of the show but I had to stop to write down my email address every time I handed one out!
And thirdly and most importantly… I am simply the world’s worst networker… every time I even attempt it I either on the one hand feel like one of those cheesy sales execs with the fake grin and not a bad word to say… or I try to be honest and sincere and end up coming across like a. I don’t have a clue what I’m talking about and b. I’m really not worth the effort. Why is it that the simplest of questions, to which the answer is obvious, suddenly sends me into a dizzy, stuttering, blushing mess of ums and ahs? And is it really necessary to make such piercing eye contact with me while I speak? I get scared that if you look into my eyes, you will all know the truth… that I’m a fraud…. I’m just a little scottish nobody who has blagged my way here and really knows nothing at all…
So I am feeling rather pleased with myself that despite all those factors, I managed to network my little ass off. I worked the party as they say… except that it wasn’t a party, but a trade show that was the entire expanse of Kensington Olympia, and I technically only worked the one very small section that we made it around in the two hours we were there… but either way it paid off – I hunted down a very cool brand that has been on my radar for a while now and arriving back in the office this morning with all systems go on the power front again I was able to arrange a meeting and set the wheels in motion!
It’s all top secret and hush hush for now and I’m not getting my hopes up… but it looks promising and if it works out – could be VERY exciting indeed… I’ll keep you posted!

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