A friend of mine is building a house. She found a great location, bought the lot, and was looking for an architect... a big decision. This person would be laying the foundation for the family happy place for years to come. My friend was looking for someone to create a modern, innovative, fun, and very livable space. Which architect do you think she chose? The first architect wore a boxy short sleeved shirt with a collar, perfect for weekends and playing with his kids. It seemed clear he designed a number of homes in such a way that worked well for others, and hers would be the same. His appearance represented that, uninteresting, with no creativity or real attention to detail involved. How could she expect him to design a unique home for her?
The second architect wore a pressed shirt and jacket in a current style with creative colors. My friend was interested in what he had to say. She was instantly hooked based on his fashion forward appearance. As it turns out, his ideas were as modern and custom as his wardrobe. His attention to design detail was just as consistent. "It's true!" she told me, "what these guys wore affected my perception of them and their quality of work." Which architect did she choose? The second turned out to be the perfect fit. What was it that sold her? It wasn't the words they used to discuss their service, it wasn't even the way they said them. It was their appearance and closely tied to that, their concern for the client, that won my friend's business.
What kind of business would you like to win? How about proving to your employer that you're a capable leader in your department, showing that you're a trustworthy sales agent to a client, or convincing your spouse of the genius behind your ideas? In the case of our architect, the winner considered what his client is looking for and dressed to meet her expectation. When you get ready tomorrow, ask yourself, who will I be seeing today and how can my appearance best speak to them?
Use your appearance to instill trust in others and help them succeed.
Image consultant and personal stylist. Dani is happily married, the mother of 3 charming children, and an Aussie named Josie Wales.