so the weather is bad lately huh, Mr Z
February 19, 2014 6:02 AM   Subscribe

I'm going to an afterparty for the BRIT Awards this evening - yay! and also - AARGH. How do I make the most of it and not be the obvious noob amongst the sparkly people?

My main problem is I've never been to an event remotely like this so I don't know what's kosher. Are there ground rules for stuff like this that you're supposed to know? How do I avoid being obviously someone who is kind of out of their depth?

I have a plus one so will be taking a friend with me so that should help with general awkwardness. But she's a noob as well so we'll both be guessing at protocol. I really want to make a good impression where possible as I have a piece of work coming out next month that I'm promoting at the moment.

Anyone who has been to anything like this - HELP. I don't want to look as terrifically awkward as I know I'm going to feel!!
posted by anonymous to Society & Culture (2 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
To some extent you can only be who you are. If you don't know many people then you're not going to be gadding about pressing the flesh with people. Similarly, if you're not especially important or known in the industry then you'll find some people will look over your shoulder for someone more 'important' to talk to. Knowing this and not being bothered about it will do wonders for your self confidence.

The good news is that there are lots of noobs. Of course there will be the few superstars, and stars of varying orders of success and credibility. There will be industry bigwigs and then executives of varying orders of clout and credibiity. But there will be an awful lot of people who are just there - hangers on, +1s, lower level execs, schlubs on corporate hospitality, competition winners, PR flacks etc etc as well as the paying public in the gallery - all of these people also do not want to look like noobs. Some of them will be trying so hard not to look like noobs they look like noobs.

Basically sit back and enjoy the ride. Don't worry too much about what other people think because it's an evening to relax, network and have fun. There is too much going on for people to be devoting time to thinking about how you do/do not look like a noob.

Some basic rules:

- Don't get shitfaced
- Don't barge into people's conversations
- Don't hover on people's shoulders hoping for an 'in'
- Don't get hung up if people want to move on quickly and work a part of the room
- Don't monopolise one person in conversation
- Don't go into detail unless requested - it's probably not the night for outlining the depth of your vision
- Don't have detailed a conversation about how long it took you to get to Greenwich
- Don't mumble your name or look at your shoes
- Don't hang onto the goodie back if you don't want what's in it
- Don't spend your time on social media telling people what an amazeballs time you're having

- Do prepare a quick 10 second pitch for who you are
- Do prepare a longer pitch for what you do, your work
- Do know who is going who you know so you can say hi if you see them
- Do bring a card so if someone is interested you can give them something
- Do brush your teeth before you head out
- Do check your clothing with enough time to fix, switch or clean stuff before you head out
- Do remember this is fundamentally just an industry awards show, albeit with added razzmatazz
- Do bring cash for the bar: it's a pain in the arse to have to be paying by card
posted by MuffinMan at 6:41 AM on February 19, 2014 [7 favorites]

Fake it til you make it time. So: stand tall, walk confidently, smile, tell yourself you've as much right to be there as anyone else. Dont gawp at people in an "ermagerd it's X!!!" way, and don't get (too) hammered and slur at people in the toilets about how much you love them/how beautiful they are etc. It's just a roomful of people, some known and some not, so just act like you would at a work function or big social event. Basically relax and have fun!
posted by billiebee at 9:44 AM on February 19, 2014 [1 favorite]

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