Hindering your career with poor fashion
Believe it or not, your career advancement depends greatly on marketing. Think about the last time you hired someone to do a job for you? Exterminator? AC repair? Financial advisor? What about buying a car or house?
Fact is, you pay attention to the exterior presentation, sub-consciously if not straight out. If the exterminator or AC repair guy or financial advisor dresses better, then you think more highly of their products making you more likely to make a purchase. However, if that financial advisor’s outfit gets you dreaming of couch surfing throughout Monday Night Football, he’s probably underdressed and under impressing you.
I know I do it. I examine a professional’s appearance and make judgments about his or her abilities. Several months ago, a salesman landed on my doorstep attempting to sell me something – I can’t fully remember but seem to recall it being a new energy plan (in Texas electricity is deregulated). He sported worn out shoes and a t-shirt (not a new one either). His display of fashion diminished his product to me. I wondered whether he was selling energy or taking a break from cleaning his attic.
The same rings true with you at work. You are your own product. So package and market it right. If your vocation places you in an office, wear nice wool slacks and a premium dress shirt (even if the norm calls for khakis and a polo). Keep your clothes ironed and wrinkle free. And, avoid stains and ring around the collar. No tennis shoes except when appropriate (i.e. casual gathering). Also, keep your shoes polished. If you find yourself laboring in a less tidy environment such as that AC repair job, choose a darker polo to hide the dirt while rotating through several pairs of sturdy work pants. Keep them as clean as possible washing them frequently. Also, avoid miserably battered tennis shoes. People notice your shoes! So, if people are wondering in what swamp you found them, it is definitely time for a new pair.
People compliment my appearance on a regular basis and my attention to fashion detail causes people and superiors to view my work as high quality. Now, don’t assume you can look good and underperform in your occupation. The two collaborate with each other. I work hard and produce quality work because I know that action speaks louder than words or posturing. Just making a point: do great work! Promote a stellar perception through your fashion.
I am curious about your experiences in the work place regarding fashion. Let me know what you think by posting a comment.