In an ever growing business casual and virtual work world, it makes it easy to work in your jammies each day or go to work half ready. However, there is a price we pay by doing this. Statistically, a first impression is formed only 7 seconds after meeting someone. Yes, only 7 small seconds! So, would you rather stand out, not get noticed or worse yet, get noticed for being that employee at the office who is not put together.
My career started in the recruiting agency business, which was and still is a very formal business, so a full suit was required each and every day. As my career evolved, and I moved on to a role with a more lifestyle based company, the lines blurred and I hung up my suits for nice skirts, dresses, denim, and blouses. I absolutely loved this flexibility, as I was now able to express myself through my clothes, shoes, and accessories. Last year, when I decided to retire my heels, well not really, and started working for myself, it would have been easy to fall into the jammies trap. However, I made the commitment to myself to dress the part and bring my “A” game every single day, and it has paid off. By taking the time to get ready for the day, I am more productive, more positive, and I truly believe people can feel that through my interactions with them rather it be face to face, over the phone, or even via email.
Here are a few simple ways to ensure you dress the part whether you work in a business casual environment or work from home.
- Do take business casual seriously. Wear nice fitting and flattering clothing such as skirts, dresses, nice denim, blouses, sweaters, etc. Avoid poor fitting clothing and sneakers. Working with a personal stylist can help you build wardrobe capsules with items that can be mixed and matched and worn both personally and professionally. A stylist can also help you determine which items work best for your industry.
- Do your hair and make up every day! Now, I’m not saying you have to look ready for a beauty pageant, but a little mascara, blush and lip-gloss goes a long way. I plan to write more about quick beauty routines in the future.
- Do look at your schedule the day before and plan accordingly. If you have an important meeting, video call, or presentation, take it up a notch and dress the part. Wrap dresses and skirts and blouses serve this purpose well in a business casual or virtual environment.
- Do remember to smile and make good eye contact. This goes without being said, but people who are positive and professional attract others who are positive and professional and get noticed more by bosses and colleagues.
By being mindful about what you wear and how you present yourself, you will make those 7 seconds count and be sure to stand out!
To get you started, you can access our FREE Professional/Business Casual Wardrobe Checklist here!
What are some of your favorite business casual outfits? Share in the comments below.