Tag Archives: business travel

How to Get the Most from Your Fragrance by Kimberly Law, President, Association of Image Consultants International (AICI)

This past summer I had the opportunity to vacation in Italy. Upon our arrival, one of the first things my friend said to me was, “smell the flowers.” I remember, at that moment breathing in the wonderful scent of Jasmine. Those of you who have been to southern Italy know what I am talking about.

It has been suggested that the sense of smell is the most powerful of all five human senses. It affects every aspect of our lives. Fragrance has been used throughout history as a way to influence the mind and the body. Although the use of fragrance is considered more acceptable in some countries and regions than others, over time it has become an important ingredient in our grooming products and many other consumer products that we use every day.

However, is it too much of a good thing? Wearing perfume, fragranced body lotion, fragranced hair styling products and fragranced deodorant, all at the same time, compete with each other and can be overwhelming to others. In in an effort to combat allergies and the overwhelming effect of too much fragrance, many public places in Canada, US and other countries of the world are becoming ‘Scent Free’.

When you wear fragrance, one way to be considerate of others is to appreciate that a little goes a long way. One way to tell if you have applied too much is by how much you notice it on yourself over time. Because you become immune to its odour, if you can smell it on yourself 30 minutes after application, you’ve applied too much. For more sparing application, try the following:

  • Apply on pulse points only
  • Spray fragrance into the air, then walk through it
  • Use body splashes or lotions that are less concentrated
  • Apply less – more often

Using less fragrance will save you money by making the bottle last longer. Another way to get the most out of your expensive eau de toilette is by exchanging some of your fragranced grooming products for fragrance-free grooming products.

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Airplane Boarding Etiquette

Over the past few years I have travelled by airplane for both business and pleasure and must say I have seen some of the best and worst behavior amongst the passengers. Before boarding or off-boarding your next flight use the following tips to show your consideration.

  • Boarding and off-boarding the airplane is no different than lining up for anything else. Wait your turn.
  • If you don’t have priority boarding, respect those who do. Wait for your seat row to be called for boarding and don’t push in front of others.
  • The same thing goes when leaving the airplane, Leave the plane in order of seating front to back. Allow those in front of you to exit first. Don’t shove and push your way to the front.
  • If you know it will take you longer to off-board due to carry-on luggage, small children or health issues. Wait in your seat to let others who are in a hurry leave the airplane first.

By waiting your turn and considering others, getting on and off the airplane will be more efficient and less frustrating for everyone. For more on travel etiquette see – How to Make Airplane Odors More Bearable

How To Make Airplane Odors More Bearable

Unless you are traveling first class, the term personal space unfortunately does not apply on an airplane. Being in close contact with others over a long period of time can be unbearable, especially when unsatisfactory odors accompany them.  Here are three odors to consider before boarding an airplane:

  • With many airlines opting out of providing a meal for their passengers many of us bring food onto the plane to eat during our flight. When deciding what to bring consider your neighbours. While strong smelling foods may be appealing to you, they may not be appealing to the person sitting next to you. Whenever possible, choose food items with more subtle odors or odors that don’t linger.
  • Body odor is not only social killer; it can make the person sitting next to you on the airplane feel ill. Although it can be caused by lack of hygiene or dental care it is often as result of diet, health issues, smoking, or just too many hours cooped up on an airplane. Before leaving for the airport, take the time to take a shower. Brush your teeth before boarding the airplane and don’t forget to floss and gargle.
  • It may be your favourite fragrance, but it doesn’t mean those around you will appreciate it like you do. Many people are allergic to fragrance; many people are sensitive to fragrance; and many people just don’t like the smell of additional fragrance. Before you leave for the airport consider those who will be near you and apply your fragrance subtly or not at all.  Check out my blog post on Travel Packing Made Easy for more tips.

Reinforce Your Company’s Image with Your Image

Most companies spend a lot of money each year developing and maintaining their company image. As a representative of your company it’s up to you to reinforce this image by presenting yourself in a way that’s consistent with the company brand. Let’s face it, when we meet someone for the first time, whether we like it or not, we instantly form an impression about them. If the impression matches what they are trying to communicate, we are more likely to trust them. Once trust is established, it’s easier to build rapport and strong business relationships.

How to Make Your Bust Look Bigger!

Unlike the woman I met on the plane to Raleigh (who by the way, I am still jealous of), some of us would give… almost anything for a bigger bust. Fortunately there are some painless things you can choose to wear that will visually increase your bust size instantly: 

  • Fabrics with texture for your tops, sweaters and blouses
  • Loose flowing fabrics or fabrics that don’t cling
  • Extra bodice details such as Breast pockets, ruffles, tucks, pleats, scallops and yokes
  • Double breasted jackets
  • Collars that draw attention away from the bust area
  • Prints and patterns
  • A padded bra

How to Keep Your Business Cards Handy

When networking, rummaging through your wallet or handbag and pulling out a business card that is wrinkled looks unprofessional. An easy way to keep your business cards accessible and appear professional is to keep them in one jacket pocket or in an attractive two pocket business card holder. Keep an empty pocket or pocket in your business card holder for the business cards you receive. This way the transaction will be smooth, it will keep the business cards organized and you will appear more professional.

Choosing a Restaurant – Who’s Choice?

When you invite a client for a business meeting at a restaurant your role becomes the host. As the host it is your job to lead the way and make the decisions, even if you are from out of town. Although it is polite to ask the guest if they have a preference on where to dine, never ask the guest to choose the restaurant. This may put him in an awkward position

The Canadian Way to Exchange Business Cards

As Canadians, we tend to adopt the customs of other cultures. And when it comes to the business card exchange it is no different. There are two ways that we Canadians exchange business cards the Japanese way and the European way. 

The Japanese / Asian business exchange is universally considered to be the most formal. The business card is held with both hands on the top corners of the card. Thumbs on top. The card is received the same way holding the business card on the bottom corners. 

The European business card exchange formula is considered a little less formal from a global perspective. However, it is still considered correct and many Canadians prefer it over the Japanese method. The business card is held in your right hand with your thumb on the top left corner of the card. Receive the business card with the right hand on the bottom right corner of the card. 

Either way, take a moment to look at the card before putting it away.

Business Card Etiquette

Even though the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver / Whistler will be a social event for most, there may be an opportunity to exchange business cards. Unfortunately many of us were never given instruction on how to conduct this exchange. Here are a few tips: 

  • Wait to be asked – don’t just hand them out.
  • When asked for a business card it is polite to reciprocate the exchange
  • In many cultures the business card is considered very important. When receiving a business card, take a moment to look at the card before putting it away.
  • Respect the card – don’t just stuff it into your back pocket. Place it carefully into a business card holder or into a jacket pocket.
  • Don’t pull out your pen and make notes on the card. This again is about respecting the giver and the card. 
  • When handing out a business card, the card is held with the print facing upright on the card so the receiver can read it.

13 Packing Tips to Make Unpacking Easier

Looking great, while living out of a suitcase, is definitely not easy. You will find that your clothing tends to wrinkle and it is usually impossible to pack enough outfits to wear without having to find a Laundromat if your trip is more than a few days. For many women and men, deciding what to pack to look good while traveling is a huge challenge.

Below you will find tips for packing to look great while you travel. Follow these tips and you won’t have to lug three suitcases with you. Looking great while on the road does not have to be difficult at all.

Avoid Pure Cotton
Cotton wrinkles rapidly and it is probably one of the worst fabrics to pack when traveling. Instead, look for clothing that is either supposed to be wrinkled (think crinkle fabric) or that is wrinkle-resistant. There are several brands of clothing that are specially designed not to need ironing and these work very well for travel.

Use Accessories to Dress up or Down
As I mentioned in my previous post, ‘Packing Light for the Stylish Traveller’, before by changing accessories you can take an outfit from one activity to another or change your look from daytime to evening. Save space by packing basic clothing styles in neutral colours. Using accessories is an easy way to alter your appearance.

Give it a Roll
A good way to pack your clothing is to roll it, rather than fold it. Roll garments in tissue, plastic or a thin towel if they are likely to wrinkle. This helps to eliminate lines and creases and helps keep clothes nice and smooth.

Keep Garments looking Great with Plastic
Covering garments in a clear plastic dry cleaning bag before hanging them in a garment bag will help to prevent wrinkling.

Roll ties and belts.
This will stop them from getting crushed during transport.

Fill the Gaps
Socks and underwear can be stuffed into shoes. This will save space while keeping your shoes from getting crushed. These items can also fill in gaps around bigger items and prevent them from moving around.

Use Space Saver Bags
This idea works well for wrinkle free fabrics. By removing the air you will get a lot more into your suitcase. Test the fabric of your garment before you try this unless you are planning to bring an iron.

Use Travel Sizes
By transferring toiletries into travel size containers you will save space and weight in you suitcase.

Limit the Shoes
Shoes weigh a lot and take up precious space. Limit your shoes to neutrals and metallic’s. They will be easier to coordinate with your clothing. Stick to comfortable, basic styles that can be worn for different kinds of activities.

Protect with Plastic
When travelling use plastic bags to protect your clothing from your shoes and toiletries. Ziploc bags work particularly well and keep your items sealed and visible. Use a kitchen garbage bag for dirty laundry.

Leave the Blow-Dryer at Home
Most hotels and resorts now have blow-dryers in the rooms. Check ahead to be sure.

Swap Clothing
No I don’t mean share clothing, although if you have laundry facilities, the idea does have possibilities. What I mean is, if you are travelling with family pack an outfit in each others’ suitcase. If swapping clothes is not an option, carry-on a complete outfit.  Just in case you and your luggage don’t arrive together.

Unpack Immediately
When you arrive, unpack immediately and hang up hanging garments. If they are wrinkled, hang them in a steamy bathroom for a short while and then let them cool in a closet.

If you have a packing tip or any questions about packing for travel, I would love to hear from you.

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