Where Did You Get That Bag?!

Where Did You Get That Bag?!

One of the questions I get asked most at conferences?

“Where did you get that bag?”

It's not what you'd expect, right?

It happened to me again at LeadDevLondon and LeadingEng last week.

For the past 6 years, I’ve been addicted to the wonderful bag company, Vendula. Their bags are whimsical, colourful and happy, with designs featuring cute shopfronts, cats & dogs and puns & quotes. They’re delightful.

And unsurprisingly, they set out to make bags that made people go “Where did you get that bag?!”

Since I’ve discovered them I’ve got bags and phone cases with a sushi shop, a cat cafe, a library, a bookshop, a toy shop, a theatre, a cake boutique and a love letter.

Regardless of which one I have with me, I’ll get stopped by strangers on the street, commuters on the tube or attendees at an event, asking me “Where did you get that bag?!”.

I love how these bags are conversation starters. I love that within a few seconds of meeting me you pretty much know what my style and vibe is. I love that they’re a way for random people to instantly know that I like cats or books or theatre.

When you started reading this post, you may have thought that this has got nothing to do with the typical things I write about, but what you wear and how you choose to portray yourself is another part of your networking and speaking story. And it’s often one that gets forgotten about.

What’s your style? What do you want new people to know immediately about you? And how do you accomplish that?

If you’re going to events, it’s worth asking yourself these questions. What sets you apart from everyone else? What makes you memorable?

Besides my bags, I take care in choosing what dress I wear (and yes, whether it has pockets), what geeky jewellery fits with it, what goes into my hair, what red lipstick I’m feeling that day (and if you know me, you know I love a good red lipstick).

It doesn't have to be through your fashion sense that you achieve this. Think about other ways of highlighting your personality: maybe you have an interesting notebook that you take notes in, maybe it's the business cards that you hand out, maybe it's your phone case.

It’s all part of deciding what overall story you want your first impression to tell about you: how do you design that?

So for all of you who asked me, took a photo and want one of these bags for yourself, check out their current collection. Be warned though: this might start a serious cute bag addiction!

(Tip: if you’re planning on getting more of these bags for yourself, friends or family, check out their loyalty scheme. Basically with each bag you buy, you collect points, giving you discounts on future bags! They don’t have a referral program yet, otherwise, I’d be sharing that here!)

Do you need help with your talks? I provide 1:1 coaching sessions and team workshops about brainstorming talk ideas, CFP writing and creating talks. Reach out to me to discuss what you're looking for.
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