Bachelor of Events, Major in Small Talk

03 August 2014

This month, I'll be celebrating my second year with ARC Public Relations, Inc. It has been a very eventful (we work in PR and we organize events, get it? Heh I crack myself up.) couple of years and I don't see our firm slowing down anytime soon. We are rebranding and expanding and taking on even more clients. It's stressful sometimes, yes, but it's a good kind of stress.

Towards the latter part of June, I wrote about how I needed change - something to snap me out of a reverie. It was granted to me via a promotion. Effective August 1, my position is now Online Relationship Officer. I also got excellent ratings on our Employee Appraisal. Personally, I didn't think it would affect me that much but wow, it certainly boosted my morale and made me want to work harder so I can show my bosses that they made the right decision promoting me.

Truth is, before I got promoted, I wasn't even sure if I was really meant to do this. Yep, almost two years in and I still had my doubts. You can't blame me. After all, I am one of the most awkward persons I know. I am painfully shy and tense up when I need to talk to people I don't know, and get terribly self-conscious when I walk into a room where I don't know anyone else. It's easier when I'm attending events as an invited blogger because then I can talk to other bloggers I know or just blend in the background  if needed, but if it's us who organized the event I have to go and schmooze/ mingle with our guests no matter how difficult I sometimes find it to be. What if they don't like me? What if I mispronounce a word? What if there's a lull in the conversation and my brain won't let me think of another topic for small talk? What then?

I'm sorry to disappoint you, but the secret is not that big of a secret, actually. The secret: fake it 'til you make it.

How? Always smile, but make sure it's a genuine smile so you don't look like you're trying too hard. Make sure that you don't have anything stuck between your teeth. Remember people's names. Be gracious. Be generous with your compliments but not overly so. Remember: in compliments as in alcohol, moderation is key. If there's a lull in the conversation, talk about the latest awesome movie or book everyone's talking about. Freaking out over anything never did anyone good. Most importantly, dress well. You don't even have to wear expensive branded clothes all the time; you just have to dress appropriately and accordingly.

When we hold events or whenever I attend other blogger events, I make sure to dress according to the dress code. If there's none provided, I wear something that I think will be appropriate for the brand or product being launched and the event's venue. No need calling for extra attention by wearing inappropriate clothing, you know. Here's what I wore to the launch of ARANAZ Boqueria held in Privato Hotel last month.

I wore this pretty tiered maxi EZRA Basics dress I got from Zalora with simple makeup and matte red lips, minimalist accessories, and my nautical heels which is a gift from my officemate Far, also from Zalora. I love its no fuss, streamlined, no frills look, and you know me, I'm all about the frills. Now that I'm 28, I've actually begun reaching for more "mature" items of clothing from shopping mall and online store racks. You know, those that don't make me look like I'm in college.

I guess this is why I related with Zalora's OWN NOW campaign.

Scott McClelland, Executive Creative Director, BBH Asia Pacific said: 'Own now' is all about confidence. It's that feeling you have when you're wearing something new and cool, or when you're doing something you love. So while the idea works nicely for online fashion, it's also a great way for Zalora to say to people - have fun, be confident about yourself and 'own it.”
Some people may find it trivial, superficial even, for us to mystically get insta-self confidence from just the clothes we wear, but I don't care. Whenever I walk purposefully along Makati CBD, hearing my heels go clack-clack-clack on the pavement, I feel like I can conquer the world. That's power no amount of personal pep talk can give me.

Here's a pro-tip to stop yourself from being too self-conscious, though: remember that other people do not think of you as much as you think they do. ;)


  1. Not a "power blogger"August 3, 2014 at 10:20 PM

    "... remember that other people do not think of you as much as you think they do."

    Absolutely! Especially bloggers oozing with self-entitlement. They only think of themselves and what they can take home after an event. :D

  2. i used to be shy as well.. but i guess my job changed me. i wouldn't be able to survive doing recruitment had i continued being a snob. so i can very well relate to you, and good thing you've developed and gained confidence. cheers to that. and congrats on your promotion. :)

    btw, i love your dress, i liked how it looked against the backdrop on your first pic. :)

  3. Thanks, AC! And that's a great story, good for you! :)


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