Dear Clients and Friends,
I have been on the corporate talking circuit this month, and I have discovered a common theme between all of them. After a period of too much casualness in the workplace, the return to a more polished, expert look has come back. Research over the years tends to show that people who are well groomed, well mannered and well spoken are assumed to be more competent. The way you dress reflects directly on the company you work for and your own ability – and the last thing you want to do is to create any doubt in your ability or the ability of the company. If you wear old, worn out, ill-fitting or frumpy clothing or have hair and makeup that is outdated or disheveled; this will undoubtedly reflect negatively on the company and yourself regardless of how good you are at your job.
Now is the time to upgrade your work wardrobe. When a man or woman invests in new attire, the message is very clear: He or she, [and the company] is healthy and confident. We need to invest in the well-made timeless classics – or as The Wall Street Journal’s Christina Binkley puts it, “Clothing that will survive trends and frequent dry-cleaning.” There is a need for a professional corporate image that allows today’s professional to create the best impressions they can for themselves and the companies they work for. In an increasingly competitive work arena, every advantage is necessary not just for continued growth but for the very existence of your company and your job.
Long before I am near enough to talk to you on the street, in a meeting, or at a party, you announce your sex, age and class to me through what you are wearing – and very possibly give me important information (or misinformation) as to your occupation, origin, personality, opinions, tastes, desires and current mood. I may not be able to put what I observe into words, but I register the information unconsciously; and you simultaneously do the same for me.
– Alison Lurie
The quote above stresses the importance of creating a positive first impression. Now, 30 seconds or less doesn’t allow you time to pull out your resume, explain that you have talent, skills, training, and career success. These quick impressions are lasting psychologists call this the halo’ effect. When your visual message is positive (clothes, hairstyle, the way you carry yourself, smile, and other non-verbal communication), they tend to assume that other aspects about you are equally positive.
You can’t recreate a FIRST IMPRESSION. Knowing your personal BRAND will help you to avoid making purchases that you won’t ever wear while wasting money and valuable time if you know your brand, you are more likely to buy items that fit within your definition.
Please call me if you need help establishing your brand, a personal style and a wardrobe that lasts. You will SAVE money in the long run if you know who you are in terms of fashion and how it relates to your personal and professional goals. Let me help you make your first impression the RIGHT one – versus your clothing saying something you don’t mean at all.
The three items you should spend money on: shoes, handbags, coats/jackets. Buy classics. High quality lasts forever and you’re less likely to tire of them. You can “rest” them for a season or two, because a classic always comes back in style as a vintage piece. Rather than saying, “I can’t afford to pay a lot of money for my clothes,” the smart business person says, “I can’t afford to dress badly by buying poorly fitting, inexpensive clothes.” The truth is, quality clothing is made of quality fabric they drape better and last longer.
A classic black (or neutral colored) trench coat will never go out of style. Pick one that complements your body style. Red is the new neutral! A red coat makes a powerful statement and will go with everything in your wardrobe. If you want a coat with a bit of an edge, this Loeffler Randall charcoal is versatile enough to stylishly take you from the office to dinner to the theater.
Whether you are looking for a boot or a heel, pick one that will last through the seasons. The shoes below are classics that you can wear anywhere and will not go out of style! All available at Dillards.com.
Invest in a handbag that will last – you carry it with you daily and this one piece will have the most visibility. Even on a day when you can’t seem to pull yourself together, a classic handbag will save your entire look. All options below are available at Dillards.com.