The smell of correspondence (my favorite fragrance of all) permeates through the air, aisle after aisle of eye candy and the best and the brightest in the stationery business are all under one roof, this is The National Stationery Show. The timing was not right for us to attend this year (tissue, please) and I will miss seeing all of you. Please be sure to swing by Crane and Co. and tell my friend Peter Hopkins hello, and as well as attend Top Trends 2009 seminar presented by my favorite editor, Sarah Schwartz, Stationery Trends Magazine. I will be there in spirit as well as every issue of Stationery Trends magazine’s What’s Write column… look me up!
Since I won’t be there taking your questions, I thought I’d leave you with a few etiquettes to ensure you have a fabulous time and present yourself in the most professional manner.
Look and Listen – The Javits Convention Center is full of interesting people and an overwhelming amount of fabulous product — making it difficult to focus on any one thing, let alone any on person. However, the process of focusing on the person in front of you is very important in communicating respect. If your eyes are constantly moving back and forth or you’re moving your head throughout the conversation the people in your presence may get the impression you are not interested in the conversation. Although it can be difficult, keeping your eyes in the direction of your conversation partner and your ears tuned into what they have to say will help you leave a lasting positive impression.
Remembering Names – With so many names and so little time, it’s inevitable that a name or two will slip your mind. The first tip for remembering names is to stop telling yourself you’re bad at remembering names. Second, have grace with yourself if and when you do forget a name, refrain from falling all over yourself and ‘what’s their name’ with apologize and excuses; simple say, “Tell me your name again” and this time, repeat it, and weave it into your next sentence or two to help with the retention process.
Working the Room – this goes for those hosting a booth or those visiting booths. If you’re the host of a booth, make sure you greet all of your guests as only a good host should do. Welcome them to the booth, be available to answer questions and refrain from accosting them with a sales speech they haven’t asked for. Keep the conversation moving and if their non-verbal tells they are ready to move on – let them go! Likewise, if you’re visiting the booth remember to be cordial, make eye contact (even if you don’t want a sales speech) and never under any circumstances say negative comments about another person’s work. As my mother said, “If you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all.”
Business cards – one of the best professional extensions of us are our business cards. In one quick motion we pass on to another individual all of the information they need to contact us. Therefore it’s imperative, especially for those in the paper products industry, that the paper we pass on communicate our image well…
Business Cards should
1. be smudge free & crease or fold free.
2. have all of your contact information clearly printed.
3. not be passed out like a stack of cards in Vegas.
4. be readily available and not something that requires an archeological expedition to uncover.
Enjoy the Big Apple and take in all of the sites and textures of the show for me. I will be anxiously awaiting your tweets; please don’t leave out the slightest detail!