Success Tweet 70: Business is the First Word in “Busines Casual”

With this post I’m half way through my series of career success coach posts explaining the ideas in my latest book Success Tweets: 140 Bits of Common Sense Career Success Advice, All in 140 Characters or Less.  You can purchase a copy of Success Tweets at your local bookstore or at Amazon.com.  Better yet, you can download a copy for free at www.SuccessTweets.com.

Today’s career advice comes from Success Tweet 70…

Business is the first and most important word in “business casual.”  Dress like you’re going to work, not a sporting event or a club.

I saw a tweet on line yesterday that said…

“The impression you make when first meeting someone is 7% verbal, 28% body language, and 65% visual.”

I retweeted this bit of information.  I’m not sure if the numbers are 100% accurate, but they are pretty much aligned with my personal experience.  That’s why the career advice in this tweet is so important.  When you’re going to work, look like you’re going to work.

Recently, I came across the website of a company called Personal Impact International www.personalimpact.ca.  The “quick tips” button on their website yielded some great information on how to dress appropriately at work.  Take a look…

Personal Impact Quick Tips from Personal Impact International

When in doubt dress up.  In business, it’s better to be over dressed than under dressed.

Dress to Impress. Impress your boss – Dress at the same level or one level down. Impress your client – Dress at the same level or one level up.

Impress with Less for LessBuy quality, timeless styles. The best you can afford. Colors and styles that mix and match create Wardrobe Capsules that save you money.

Play it Safe all Year Round. Choose seasonless fabrics such as lightweight wools, fine cottons, and silks. Natural fibers look and feel more expensive.

 Love What You Buy. Don’t buy anything on sale you wouldn’t have paid full price for.

Think in Three’s. Less is better when in comes to color. Wear no more than three colors at once including accessories. Patterns count as one color.

Plan Ahead for Professional Polish. It’s the little things that count. Grooming really does make a difference. You — and your clothing — should be in tip-top condition.

Add a Little Pizzazz. Take it easy on the Accessories. Accessories can create the look that says ‘me’. Accessories are the extras that can give you individual style. But remember, in business less is more.

Make a Statement in Shades. A dark or muted jacket worn with a light or contrasting top highlights the face adding authority and presence.

Dress Down with Style. Even on casual days, be prepared. Keep a coordinating jacket handy for the unexpected meeting with the boss or clients.

Avoid Image Blunders. Everything has it’s time and place. Sexy, frumpy and sweaty have no place in the work place — even on casual day. Clothing worn for special activities should be saved for those activities.

Make a Little Adjustment. Making small alterations to the sleeves, hemline and waistline or simply changing the buttons can make your clothing look custom tailored, and you look like a million.
 
Common Sense Prevails. If it doesn’t seem quite right, it probably isn’t. Common sense and tasteful good judgment can create impressions that help you soar to the top.

I like this career advice – if for no other reason that the last point – “common sense prevails.”  The Personal Impact people are right – “if it doesn’t seem quite right, it probably isn’t.”

Things have changed and are more casual today.  Way back in 1983 I showed up for work in a blue blazer and dark charcoal slacks, white shirt and tie.  My boss called me into his office and told me that a blazer is a “sport coat” and that I was at work, not a sporting event.  He suggested that in the future I should stick to suits for work. 

That was then.  This is now.  Times change, and the workplace is more casual.  Today a nice blazer and slacks with a tie is considered quite dressy.  However, the career success coach point remains.  When you go to work, dress to make a positive impression on those around you.

The common sense career success coach point here is simple.  Successful people create positive personal impact.  To create positive personal impact, follow the career advice in Tweet 70 in Success Tweets.  “Business is the first and most important word in “business casual.”  Dress like you’re going to work, not a sporting event or a club.”  As I’ve mentioned, when you’re going to work, dress like you’re going to work.  It’s always better to be overdressed than underdressed at work.  When I’m working at home, I may be dressed in my exercise clothing.  However, when I go out – even for a meeting with a client I know well – I shower, shave, comb my hair and put on clothes appropriate for the meeting.  A lunch or coffee appointment usually means a pair of nice slacks, a blazer and an open collar button down shirt.  A visit to a client’s office always means a jacket and tie.  Work is work, fun is fun.  Dress appropriately for each.

That’s my take on the career advice in Tweet 70 in Success Tweets.  What’s yours?  Please take a minute to share your thoughts with us in a comment.  As always, thanks for reading.  I really appreciate you.

Bud

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