Let’s be honest. Being at an A-List gathering can be a bit intimidating for us regular folks. Thanks to my job, I get to attend a whole lot of these events and the tips I’m sharing today are survival tricks I’ve learnt over time.
In case you were wondering, here is the definition of A-list according to Google: “a real or imaginary list of the most celebrated or sought-after individuals, especially in show business”. Okay, now that we have that cleared up, let’s dive right in!
1. Look Good
Put some effort into looking good so you won’t stick out like a sore thumb. But remember not to sweat the small stuff. The first thing to do is to know the theme/dress code of the gathering. You don’t want to be the lady wearing jeans and a tee at a black tie event. If you need help (which is nothing to be ashamed of), just ask the internet or a very fashionable friend. Nothing worse than showing up over or under dressed to an event with important people in attendance. Especially if you are planning to make some business connections. The ugly truth is, people who don’t know you will judge you based on your appearance, whether they do it consciously or not does not matter. What matters is you can’t afford that a potential investor, business partner or friend has the wrong first impression of you even before you get a chance to speak.
2. or Put the Pressure on the Onlookers
I learnt this trick from my best friend and don’t know if it deserves its own title but here’s what I mean: We all know looking good has a way of perking up your confidence level; but if per chance, you show up not looking as good as you planned or you got the theme all wrong or just don’t have anything to wear but you really have to attend the event (these things happen to the best of us), conduct yourself with so much confidence and without a care in the World, that the pressure of not looking appropriate is not on you but on the people looking at you. Just pretend you are the one dressed to script while everyone else is wrong. Problem solved!
3. Plan Your Arrival
At an A-List event, you can leave unnoticed but you can’t arrive unnoticed and your statement actually starts from when you arrive. It’s always good to arrive in a nice ride (definitely not a painted taxi) that drops you right at the entrance and to achieve this, Uber or Easy Taxi are your best bets if you don’t have anyone to drive you.
4. Always Start with the Ladies Room
This allows you to double check your attire and make up for any smudges or a wardrobe malfunction. And more importantly, it helps you catch your breath before having to face people.
5. Have a Goal
Ask yourself, “why am I attending this event?” This is an important question to ask for any event at all because the answer will influence a lot of your decisions including what you wear, what part of the room you stand in, how you behave, the people you talk to, etc. For example, if you are looking to network for your career, you’d know to avoid wearing a revealing outfit, target meeting specific industry key-players and you’d not leave home without your business cards. And if you’re looking for a date, you’d be on the lookout for fine boys to “accidentally” bump into (if you know what I mean *wink*). The execution strategies are different for every goal and having a goal can help you focus and make the best of your outing.
6. Be Confident
Remember that you too are A-List waiting to happen (unless you really aren’t about that life). If what it takes is psyching yourself up with pep talks pre-event, then please do it. Walk tall, with your head held high; no slouching or trying to make yourself as small as possible. Take short, steady steps and remind yourself that you have a right to be there as much as everyone else. I understand that this can be really hard for some of us and what I sometimes do is talk to a friend who makes me feel good about myself right before the outing.
7. Prepare to answer the question “What do you do?”
Simple as this is, you’d be amazed at how easy it is to forget. Please be prepared to introduce yourself the exact way you want to be perceived and this can differ from event to event depending on what you want to achieve. For example, I’m a fashion blogger at a blogging or fashion event, I’m a project manager at a corporate event where I’m looking to network for career advancement, and I’m a writer if I want to impress a good looking arty guy (hehehe, just kidding. Or not :D)
I don’t know about you but when I smile, I feel calmer. Smile at the ushers, the hosts, the waiters, that random person you have been locking eyes with, the person sitting or standing next to you, just smile. Smiling makes you look more approachable to other people. Besides, I am yet to meet someone with an ugly smile. Who says no to looking a little prettier?
9. Learn To Make (and Receive) Small Talk
For someone who is horrible at small talk, I shouldn’t be the one giving this advice but, whatever. I’m trying to learn though. Understand body language and if you notice you are being snubbed, it’s the person who has a problem, not you. Just move on (no apologies!) to a more receptive person. Also, don’t be that person who gives one-word responses to someone who is trying to make small talk with you. If the person isn’t making any sense, just politely excuse yourself from the situation. Check out this post by dummies.com on mastering the art of small talk for some more help.
10. Behave yourself
Say you spot a celebrity musician who you happen to have a crush on at the other end of the hall. Do you go over to him and start gushing on and on about how much you love his music and how he is the one you think of before you sleep at night and bla bla? No! That would be making a complete fool of yourself and embarrassing the person. By all means, go over and introduce yourself if you want to, but a word or two of appreciation is great. Just leave it at that. Quick tip: Celebrities are used to fans gushing all over them, be the different person who treats them like a normal person. You are more likely to be remembered that way. Generally be of good behavior: no getting drunk, no shouting and eat with poise. Don’t know the proper way to use cutlery? Please learn. Avoid any specially reserved seats or tables unless you are ushered to one.
11. Enjoy Yourself
Because life is short and you cannot come and go and kill yourself. #Okbye. 😀
Did I miss anything?
About the Party
It was the Media Launch Party of The Style Mania Magazine Fashion Issue with Omoyemi Akerele (The brain behind Lagos Fashion and Design Week and the sweetest/nicest human being ever) of Style House Files as the cover girl. I don’t even know if I had fun, because I was busy running around to make sure the event went well. By the time it started, there was so much tension built up in me that I felt like a Zombie. But it did go fabulously well thanks to the good people at No Surprises Events (it’s a pity you guys can’t tell from the few pictures I have here). Maybe just take my word for it? :).
PS: I did my make up myself so I take full responsibility for the poor face beat but I swear it looked nicer in person :D. I have given up on carving my brows because I don’t know how to and I don’t have the patience to learn.
And here is the beautiful cover…
Hope you enjoyed reading this post as much as I enjoyed writing. What do you think of my outfit? Please leave a comment below, I’d love to talk :).
I love you for reading.