Take a Second Look at your Look
As we talk with individuals about their style we often hear similar things…
“No one at my workplace dresses up, so I don’t need to either.”
“My boss doesn’t even wear a tie!”
“My work is pretty casual. I’m usually the best-dressed person wearing a button-down shirt.”
These statements, and others like them, are sad for us. Not sad because we are realizing they’re probably not going to be a great customer for us, but because they show a level of complacency. The “no one at work dresses up” mentality is, in our opinion, one of the reasons why certain individuals find themselves continually restless in their jobs, unable to move up the ladder, and unable to stand out in their careers.
If you, or anyone you know, find yourself in a position where you’re not taken as seriously as you’d like, where you’re not as respected as you feel you should be, where your boss isn’t noticing you, etc. then you have two options: continue to fly under the radar, or change something.
No one is going to start treating you differently based on a desire you have, or a frustration you’re feeling. Your only option is change the way you’re acting and presenting yourself. Dressing better is the first step in this.
Dress better and strike up an unexpected conversation with someone. Dress better and greet your boss by name. Dress better and take on a project that no one else wants. Dress better.
If you’re wondering how to get ahead, and how to make yourself stand out among the seas of the other lower-on-the-totem-pole people in the office, present yourself in a better way than they do. If you’re more soft spoken, and are finding your ideas are being overshadowed by the louder voices in the conference room, dress in a way that can’t be ignored. Many people think that if they dress better than everyone around them, they’ll attract unwanted attention. Personally, we have never seen this happen. Sure, it’s a common fear, but it is never a reality. Dressing better than your peers will only help move you forward in your job, and in life. You’ll be taken more seriously because you’ll look like you’re more serious about your job, and you’ll depict an aura of success.
As much of a poison as the “causal Friday” mentality is to the society of the well-dressed, it makes it easy for basically anyone to out-dress just about everyone. That’s good news for people who are looking to make a change, and stand out in the crowd.
To be honest, there are a lot of situations, conversations, and mentalities that are completely different from ours that we respect. The “no one at work dresses up, so I’m not going to either” is one that we just don’t. We can’t and won’t get on board with that philosophy. It’s not going to get you anywhere, and we’re going to help someone who really cares take that promotion away from someone who’d rather go unnoticed. Judgments based on appearance are a fact of life. People are making assumptions about you based on the way you look, are dressed, and present yourself. You judge other people in the same way. If their first impression of you is a negative one, you automatically have something to overcome. If their first impression of you is one of respect and trust, you just have to take what’s yours.
Unless you’re in a situation where you don’t want a better position at work, you don’t want more money, and you don’t want more respect, then YOU need to make the change. A positive change won’t just fall into the lap of your stain-resistant khaki Dockers.