I started the day as an usher-ette smiling and greeting fellow delegates, speakers, media people and a face I recognised from Playschool as they got off the elevator at the top floor of the Museum of Contemporary Art. (That was me in the purple dress, lace tights and metallic blue Dr Martins). The view from the Harbourside room was ah-mazing: a panorama of the Harbour Bridge to the left and the Opera House to the right. Even though it was drizzling and overcast it was still quite impressive. (I’ve put the photos of the view and the speakers up on the Mountain Moon and Sea Facebook page as they were taken on my mobile phone).
I must say that the staff at the event were really friendly and helpful, they even delivered a coffee to me when they realised I was on crowd control duties and couldn’t wait for it to be made. All the presenters brought their A-game! Chad Dickerson, CEO at Etsy, was a great opener, speaking on Finding Your Courage. He shared his own life experiences in small business and answered a lot of questions.
Chad Dickerson is a really dynamic speaker, a hard working person and a giving person as he was so willing to share his knowledge and life experience with all of us. He spoke about not giving up, connecting with and supporting your community, and taking advice from everyone but to only apply what works for you. This, in particular, really struck a chord with me as he emphasised how important it is to listen to your truest self.
“Sometimes you just need someone to believe in you and support you.”
Chad Dickerson, CEO, Etsy.com
I know that my life has blossomed and grown because of the support and encouragement I’ve received from family and friends. I will never forget the encouragement of Grace Kingston, who invited me to be a part of my first group exhibition. Grace encouraged me to join in a life drawing class she was hosting and this sparked my interest and helped me to develop my creative and artistic skills. That initial positive experience, of exhibiting work and selling my work has changed my life and created a career path for me.
During question time I found my courage to stand up, with mic in hand, to ask Chad Dickerson a few questions. My first question was : What helps make an Etsy store that lasts? Chad responded by emphasising how important it is to be passionate, have good photos and market your Etsy shop through social media like Pinterest, Twitter and Facebook.
My second question was: What has helped him through the most challenging times in his life? His response was to stay focussed and have faith that it will get better. Wise words.
After the formal programme concluded we were all treated to a magical, light-filled wonderland inside, with an amazingly VIVID city skyline. I took some cool photos and some shaky video footage during the cocktail networking session on my Nikon Coolpix L120. (Not an expensive or fancy camera but it is handy for stock photography and taking HD movies). I’ve found the courage to try new things, explore new (for me) technologies and to share my truest self with the world, because life is too short to be afraid. With this in mind, I present to you my first EVER video production. Hopefully there will be more in future as it’s a whole lot of fun!
The Etsy Success Sydney forum was one of the most inspiring and educational days I’ve had in my adult life. I enjoyed being a part it, volunteering and helping everyone find where they needed to go. I’ve already started to apply what I learned. I’ve stopped resisting Pinterest and Twitter as I can see that if I embrace them and use them selectively that they are great ways to connect with the people I want to reach and the communities that I want to be a part of.