As a mum who works around three energetic kids you sometimes feel that there is absolutely no time to think about new ideas for your business or to nurture yourself. You are dealing with tons of extra tasks flooding in. Within the family life it’s things like creating costumes for the kids' school play or planning birthday parties for them. Within the business it’s things like lost parcels and the customer waiting for a product or unpaid customer invoices. All these extra tasks take a lot of time which leads to a constant struggle to stay ahead of things and doesn’t allow extra time for new business inspirations.
Lately I did quite a bit of research into vitamins and minerals and how much your body needs them and how much it really gets. As a result I've been looking at superfoods and ordered some spirulina powder. Spiruline is a dark green algae so when I opened the package I thought is is really dark green. No way my kids would try a teaspoon of that so I've mixed it into our morning fruit smoothie. I only used a tiny bit, maybe half a teaspoon. However the whole smoothie turned green
In my eyes tradeshows are tough but sometimes they are still worth doing them. After I did Top Drawer with my Green Bottles in September 2011 a company from Spain contacted me to ask if I wanted to become UK distributor for boc’n roll and snack’n go. They assumed a company who does trade shows is big enough to deal with enquiries like theirs. They also went through my website which made them contacting me. Funnily enough I was looking around for more products for my current product range anyway and had a food wrapper in mind. I am always searching for eco-friendly products that substitute disposable products. What a coincidence. I asked for some samples to find out if this is a product I would like to distribute. I received the samples and was already impressed.
In addition to the article about our first trade show that a lot of you loved we would like to share our first experience with consumer shows. As mentioned in an earlier article, we set up our business as UK distributor for Green Bottle (BPA free bottles that are made out of stainless steel) at the end of 2010 and started off with our first consumer show in March 2011: UK Aware in London, a show that attracts eco-conscious people. In preparation to the show I was planning stock numbers.
Last year in September I did my first trade show (Top Drawer) in London Olympia and it’s been quite a challenge. Getting everything ready for the stand plus spending three days in a row staying in your stand as well as talking to a lot of people is exhausting. My panels, plinth and info material arrived just in time during the week before the show started. I was frightened that something might not be ready in time. What, for example, should I have done if the plinth would not have been ready? Finding an alternative in just a couple of days would have been very tricky as I got a customised one to fit all the 24 different designs of my stainless steel water bottles I’ve got. But it arrived in time. There are many other things that can go awry as I was about to find out though.
After I started my stainless steel water bottle journey I’ve thrown out most of my plastic products and I am now trying to use reusable products instead of disposable ones whenever possible. At the same time I started using twitter. Admittedly, I always thought “what is Twitter for” and “which topics could be interesting for people to tweet about” beforehand. I just didn’t see a reason why I should have used it.
The new year started with getting stuck at the airport with all the kids and tons of heavy luggage packed with Christmas presents and things you can buy in Germany but not in the UK. Our flight was cancelled because of a storm in the UK and the only chance to get back to London was early in the morning flying of the following day – and to London City instead of Heathrow (which would have been a 25 minute drive to our place). So we ended up getting up at 3.30am in the morning, dragging our kids and (the still heavy) luggage to the airport.