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Ladies Etiquette WIth JANET ADETU: What’s In Your Bag? (Part 1)

As you step out of your home all ready and dressed up for the day’s activities, you cannot but ensure that you are carrying your handbag, briefcase or trolley depending on what you are doing and where you are going. Whether you are going to work, your business, your shop, or your institution. As a professional there is an element of incompleteness when you do not carry a bag to house your business tools.

Interestingly, the business handbag has moved with the fashionable times from various shapes, sizes, colours, fabrics and prices.  People feel at liberty to bring any fancy bag to work, today it’s all about the designer label and the fact that it is an expensive bag,

I am emphasizing bags today as it is one item that can influence your personal, professional and executive presence. Your carriage is enhanced or sabotaged by the way you carry your bag, which in turn affects your posture. To exhibit the right leadership carriage is a contribution of your dress sense, your style personality, your walking style and altogether the message you are communicating when people see you. It is important to work on your leadership traits, your total package and image says everything about you. There is so much that goes into that image, your bag believe it or not says so much.

I have seen women in search of their business card at a networking gathering dig right at the bottom of their bag. Some women carry so much in one bag from important certificates, to unread books, keys galore, extra purses, uncountable pens, sweet wrappers, bulky diaries and much more, Many of these items are of necessity though, depending on the bag size and shape you should determine what is important for the time of day or not; and prune down the contents.

Let me ask a quick reflective question regarding you bag you regularly hold.
Are you carrying the kitchen sink?                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      
Do you rotate the same thing in your bag daily?
Do you have irrelevances in your bag?
Do you keep highly confidential documents in your bag?
How much information about you is revealed about you in your bag?

The contents of your bag speak to your personality and who you are. If someone where to look in to your bag how would they describe the owner?

Many women simply carry too much junk out and about. The weight of your bag and how you carry it will affect your posture. If the bag is quite heavy this creates discomfort forcing you to adjust your comportment and carriage just to accommodate that bag. If the bag is moderate in weight then this poses an advantage when you want to present that well-polished image, provided you know how to carry your bag.

Bag Content Protocol

 The bag you carry should reflect the following:

1. Carry a bag that reflects the true nature of what you do as a business professional, a leather handbag or briefcase is ideal.

ii. Invest in a good quality bag that can stand the test of time.

Iii. Be conservative, authoritative and approachable in choosing your bag design. The bag you use during the weekend should be  more expressive of your style in comparison to your working day bag during the week.

iv. Carry what you need for that day and de-clutter your bag of irrelevances.

v. Be mindful of carrying any confidential materials or document in your bag for long periods of time. Remove it from your bag if not required.

vi. Position things in your bag compartments that way you can identify with, your business card holder, your purse, your driving license, your keys and much more.

vii. Specifically position your phone in a pocket area of your bag you can access early.

Viii. Keep your keys together in a key purse to avoid having to search for them profusely.

ix. All writing materials should bet at kept at a maximum of 3 or 4 pens.

x. Contents of your bag should be for business, health,  wellness, social responsibility and much more.

Identifying things that create an overweight handbag

A. Too Many Phones.
Even though we have reached an era where you can have a phone that can accommodate two and for some more  sim cards at once, we still have many people preferring to separate their sim cards into individual phone handsets for many logical reasons. The phone is your computer, office and your business in your palm, It creates immediate weight for any handbag especially when they are many. A level of discomfort will be experienced and this can also directly affect the way you carry the bag, your posture and carriage too.

B. Extra Books.
A diary is ideal to document and take note of your appointments, the size of your diary should complement the size of your bag.  Huge diaries create overload. Adding a couple of jotters a writing pad, a novel, your bible, may just become excessive and unnecessary. If they are that important you may create a utilities bag that can accommodate the extras without being noticed.

C. Documents, Documents more Documents.

Documents are clearly not for your everyday handbag, certificates, exam results, contracts, agreement, files or folders are not for the hand bag. In the event that your hand bag goes missing it would be sad to see those documents go with it. Place such documents in the briefcase or another ideal workbag before setting out. 

D. Powerbank

The power bank is a very useful gadget a necessity, to say the least. Depending on the size and functionality they can come large and slightly heavy adding more weight to your bag.  Having extra wires and phone gadgets in another purse stored elsewhere will reduce carrying too much.

Watch out for part 2.

Share your experience with me: 
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