One of the newest green meeting practices is asking participants to bring their own conference bag instead of the host organization supplying one. It makes sense, we all have so many. Before you say your participants would find this “tacky” or “cheap”, hear me out.
Because, what is actually happening is participants are showing up with:
-Bags from earlier conferences,
-Bags from organizations they belong to in their personal lives,
-Bags they have imprinted with personal messages such as “Ask me about…”,
-Bags from their favorite vacation spot,
And it has become a whole social networking game that really has participants enrolled. I have heard reports the coolest bags are those from the very first conferences held by the organization and those who carry them are very highly regarded. Also prestigious are bags from unique destinations and/or made by indigenous people.
What began as a way to save the environment and money has the unanticipated consequence of a new conversation starter! Who would have guessed?