I was invited to speak at the University of Salford Business School to the Digital Marketing and Information Systems Masters students who were tasked with developing digital technology products or apps to improve lives.
I discussed my journey as an entrepreneur in the technology industry, my challenges, achievements, aspirations and inspirations in developing a fashionable, practical and technology driven product. My goal in delivering my presentation was to inspire the students and to give them ideas on what they could develop themselves.
I also wanted to share that if a lawyer from Australia with no background in technology can enter a male dominated industry and progress her company to becoming one of the Top 150 Most Influential Brands in Wearable Tech in the first year of running her business, anyone with the same passion, drive and motivation can do the same.
While I have been successful in receiving awards and progressing MadeWithGlove, my biggest reward comes in speaking to my potential customers who need slimline fashionable heated gloves.
It has been a wonderful journey full of challenges that most women face in male dominated industries. However, my gender doesn’t stop me from wanting to achieve my goals. I became a STEM Ambassador to be involved in using STEM based activities to enhance a student’s learning in the STEM fields. This is also one of the most rewarding aspects of running my business.
My technical team are building my product and working remotely in Silicon Valley. The challenge is not only incorporating fashion with technology, but also using smart textiles to help us get around the battery issue. The battery issue for us at MadeWithGlove as well as the industry is one of the many challenges we face in developing a wearable technology product.
Wearable Tech Fashion | Show & Tell
To give the students more ideas, I brought some great wearable tech products to show and tell. These products included a self lighting bag that Rachael, my newly appointed wearable tech assistant made. The self lighting bag lights up when you open it and turns off when you close it. It’s great for finding keys, purses, phones and pens! Rachael has written a blog here about the Self lighting bag here.
I also brought Kisha, the smart umbrella that you can’t possibly lose. It uses beacon Bluetooth technology that connects with an app to notify you when you have left it behind in a café, bar or shop. It also syncs to google maps to tell you where you’ve left it! The in-class demonstration was quite funny when one student left with my phone but then we decided he should have left with the umbrella! Read my blog on Kisha here.
Finally, I brought some great Virtual Reality cards I received from a recent trip to the Wearable Technology Show in London. The Octagon VR animal cards showed the students how VR can enhance learning in a very fun and interactive way. At one point, it sounded like we were in a zoo with horses, elephants, lions and monkeys making all sorts of noises from the app. Watch the video below to see the Virtual Reality animal cards come to life!
The students and Dr Marie Griffiths really enjoyed being interactive with all the digital and tech products and I enjoyed seeing their delightful faces in having a go at playing and seeing what technology and WTF | Wearable Tech Fashion products can bring to our lives.
For a snapshot on my presentation, here is a video from the day!
This blog post was written by Michelle Hua, Founder & CEO of MadeWithGlove, a UK wearable tech company designing fashionable heated gloves for women. In 2014, Michelle led MadeWithGlove to being in the Top 150 Most Influential Brands in Wearable Tech and was a finalist and highly commended blogger at the UK Blog Awards 2016.
Follow Michelle on Twitter @MadeWithGlove