Business Card Management

So one of the points of going to Conventions and Conferences, regardless of what kind, is to make connections. I think the bloggers have figured out a great way to manage those connections, as far as physical items go.  Every blogger comes to a conference prepared with a stack of their own business cards, a one hole punch, and a binder ring.  Then, as they receive business cards from their new besties at Conference, they punch a hole in one end and slide it onto the binder ring, maybe making a few notes about the person on their card.

I think this is brilliant.  Like a portable, cheap rolodex.  Cathe Holden made a great tutorial on how to do this, which inspired me to make the following little tutorial:

materials

materials – business card sized cardstock, Post-It tabs, washi tape, hole punch (doesn’t have to be as cute as mine).   Not pictured: binder ring, scissors, pen

printed dividers

printed dividers – I printed a set of 8 business cards using Avery Design and Print online.

attach tab to front

attach tab to front – I love these tabs!

label tab

label tab – you can also write on the tabs themselves, but you can only use ballpoint pens, I think.  The felt tip Flair pens I was using smeared, so I used my handy dandy labeler.

cover back with washi tape

cover back with washi tape

punch hole

punch hole

covers, pre-made dividers, blank dividers

covers (2 business cards washi-taped together), pre-made dividers, blank dividers (notice I cut the tabs in half to make finding a particular section easier)

finished book

finished book – just thread everything onto a binder ring

I know that the vendors will all have business cards.  I know that some of the ladies I meet will have business cards.  Business cards are kind of like upscale SWAPs.  🙂

I have already started looking into make some business cards for myself.  Cool ones, not boring business-y ones.  But not too “out there” either.  Ones that will say, “I’m a Girl Scout Leader,  I work with girls AND adults,  I have a sense of humor, and I get things done.”

I think I have decided to go with Jukebox.  I got one of their sample packs sent to me, and the cards are really nice quality.  I have read very good reviews concerning their quality and customer service.  Normally for my more artsy business cards, I use Moo because I love the ability to have 50 different cards in a pack of 50 cards.  But that pack of 50 cards costs $15 even if it’s all the same design.  With Jukebox, I get 500 cards for $53.  The same order at Moo would cost over $100.  And 500 cards does seem like an awful lot to me, but I figure I’ll give away 100 at Conference, maybe another 50 every year during recruiting to new leaders in my Community, and after I’m no longer in my current position with my Community, they will be SWAP fodder. 🙂

samples from Jukebox

Do YOU have a Girl Scout business card?

Adult Girl Scout Uniform

Quick Quiz!  What is the official Girl Scout Uniform for Adult Volunteers?

 

 

According to GSUSA,  it’s a navy business outfit with an official scarf and your membership pin tab.

Yeah, that’s not what I wear in any of my roles.  Sorry, GSUSA.

As a Troop Leader, I wear clothes appropriate to the activity (jeans and t-shirts for meetings, with hiking boots and bandanas added for camping).  As a Community Leader (the new name for Service Unit Manager, which I am not fond of), I wear nicer clothes, put on jewelry, and maybe put on makeup.  As a Facilitator, I wear khakis and a darker shirt which identifies me as a Council Volunteer (as required by my Council).

Houston, we have a problem.

I’m kind of a casual dressing person.  In my head, I look like this, very subdued and loose, kinda boho (but not crazy), nothing glittery or neon.  My jewelry is usually more like this, though. *grins*  We’ll talk jewelry later.

But business attire?  Um, nope.  Not in my closet.  I am a mostly Stay at Home Mom, with some Jewelry Teacher thrown in on the side.  These are not careers which call for a suit.

And navy?  Seriously?  Ooooh, boy.  I don’t wear anything navy except denim.  I love blues, don’t get me wrong! But navy is so somber; I prefer teals.

Okay, so I will have to acquire the required uniform.  Now comes problem #2.  While, in my head, I am this tall willowy figure who can wear anything, in reality I am a tall plus sized woman who carries a lot of her weight in a well distributed way.  I do not have a shelf butt, nor am I exceedingly top heavy.  Think of it this way: I have an hourglass figure that holds enough sand for 2 days. 😉  I find tight structured clothing extremely restrictive, and frankly it doesn’t serve me well, style-wise.  Most suit jackets for some bizarre reason end right across the hip, which on me would kind of point out where I am widest.  Doesn’t that break a fashion rule somewhere???  And while Anna Marie Chavez may be able to really rock a standard business suit; to me, it is just reminiscent of a badly designed corset.

Don’t even get me started on trying to shop for a good looking suit.  If you are a plus sized woman, then you have gone through the process explained exceedingly well (with images) here at Buzzfeed.  One thing they don’t mention is that even though there are a huge number of online options available now, 99% of them use “plus size” models who are a size 12 or so, so the customer has NO realistic idea of how the clothing will look on them.  We just get the slender look they want us to think their clothes can give us.

So, add it all up, and my best option is to make my own.  I will get something in fabrics I know will travel well, sized to fit me exactly, in a style that will make me feel comfortable and confident.  Here is the pattern I plan to use (notice the woman on the package is plus size!).  I love waterfall style jackets, and they will look so great with scarves – which is something I will have to practice wearing in a professional way.  I usually use them for my hair! 🙂  I will be getting white or ivory sleeveless shells to go under the jacket (because I don’t really get cold easily), and a nice green based blouse that I can wear with my suit.  I plan on getting one pair of more standard suit pants to expand my wardrobe for the week.  (I’ll get more specific in a future post.)

One of my fellow possible delegates (who has been there, done that 3 times) said that any official uniform is acceptable at the National Council Sessions, so she is going to be rocking the green one from the 70’s!  🙂 Not my style, but I really like the scarf’s design.  I would have to sew 2 together, though – it’s only 36″ long.

A Delegate, maybe?

Every blog begins with an idea.  The idea that started this one was, “There’s not a lot of information available for people who have been nominated as a Delegate for the Girl Scout National Convention.”  And that came up because I’ve been nominated, and I have been looking for information.  Did a I find any? Nope.  Nada.  Nyet.

I have looked on Google (trust me, I have tried every search term I could think of), I have looked on Pinterest.  I have looked for blog posts, I have looked for forum threads.  You don’t want to know the number of blog posts there are which say that Girl Scouts are communist lesbians who are apparently going to bring the end of civilization.  I didn’t want to know.  If you look for “packing for a convention”, you might get detailed descriptions of how to pack your Star Wars droid costume or how to get your cosplay weaponry through airport security without a hassle.

If I was going to a blogger conference (or surprisingly, a librarian’s conference), it would be no problem.  There are pages and pages of links to posts detailing what people packed, how they got it all in a single carry-on, what to do about roommates, what to expect at the conference, and what the schedule was like last year!

Add to that the issue that (as you can see in my About the Adventurer picture, I’m a fairly plus sized woman.  Which makes travel by air a whole lot of fun to contemplate.  This will be the first time since I was in college (nearly 20 years ago) that I will fly alone.  I’m not a nervous flyer; I used to fly from Texas to Arizona every summer and back to visit my grandparents. I love flying.  But the last several times I have flown, I have had one of my children sitting next to me, who didn’t mind if mommy’s hip was squished up against theirs.  I’m not so sure a stranger will feel the same way.

And yes, I know, it’s 9 months away.  I like to mull things over and prepare for a long time.  And there are certain things (like the suit) which I will need a lot of prep time for (I’ll explain that later, promise).  I should get more information after I get elected.  And yeah, I may not get elected (although, I have heard this was a low nomination year for my Council, so this is not likely), but even if I’m not this information will be helpful to the next “me”, who is elected and is panicking trying to figure out what to do, and comes from a Council who isn’t giving any information out.

That said, this is MY experience.  Your Mileage May Vary.