Do you want to impress your customers, or influence and stand out among co-workers? If YES, here’s how to dress for success as a man in business and at work.
First impression matters in everything we do, be it in our daily lives or in the corporate world. Basically in the corporate world, if you fail to put your best foot forward, your first chance to make a good impression may also be your last.
Even though the qualifications that are listed on your resume are the things that got you your interview in the first place, how you present yourself in person will be a deciding factor as to whether or not you will be considered as a prime candidate for the position.
You need to understand that business attire has changed significantly over the years, especially in the last 20 years. A lot of people have forgotten why proper business attire is very beneficial. Most companies prefer to allow and even encourage employees to dress freely or casually for comfort.
This tends to work well in more creative work environments. But some other companies will typically encourage and/or need a more defined and professional dress code to maintain a professional image for themselves and the business especially in a company where employees routinely interact with prospects, clients and business partners.
One of the major reasons why dressing in a proper business attire is very necessary for every business professional is because it portrays a visual image of professionalism. Here are tips on how a man can dress for success in business and at work;
20 Tips on How to Dress for Success as a Man in Business and at Work
- Maintain a Clean, Well-Groomed Appearance
Have it in mind that you could be wearing an expensive, high-end designer suit, but if it is not clean, pressed and well fitted, it is just a waste of resources. We believe that in the corporate world, the amount of money you spend on your wardrobe is not nearly as important as presenting a clean, well-groomed image. This is why we suggest you maintain a well-groomed appearance.
- Factors of complete appearance
Have it in mind that colour, style and fit are the key factors for your complete appearance. Note that colour affects people’s psychology. The business arena is not an exception to this fact. Style plays a vital role if you want to display power and professionalism. When clothes fit you well, it appears as if they were made for you.
You need to know that each colour communicates a message and contains an impact of its own. How well you are able to put them together will convey your message. For instance, dark colours like black, navy and dark grey shades will imply psychological power, knowledge, responsibility and success. White denotes cleanness, formality and sophistication. Pastels symbolize femininity and softness.
- Stay clear of brown
Most people don’t know that brown indicates that you are reliable and firm. However it even implies that you do not have power and authority. It is better to avoid brown.
5. Style of clothing
We believe that people tend to look more powerful when they wear a suit coat with long sleeves, faintly padded shoulders, which adds authority, plus a collar. Pleats would add bulk. Note that it provides you an illusion of height to wear classical three -buttoned jackets. The men and women who have average height can wear single-breasted jackets. The double-breasted jackets fit taller people better.
- When Unsure, Opt for a Business suit Rather than Casual Apparel
Anytime you are not sure of what the dress code is for a particular office or corporate event, opt for business dress. It will look bad if you arrive at an office that adheres to a business dress code in casual attire. To be successful, your image should give your colleagues the impression that you take your role with the company seriously and you are ready to get down to business. Showing an image of professionalism is of the utmost importance in a corporate environment.
- Your Wardrobe Doesn’t Need to be Expensive
A lot of professionals are under the illusion that a work wardrobe has to be expensive. It is not necessary for you to frequent high-end boutiques to acquire stylish clothing for work. Pick some classic staples, and build upon your wardrobe little by little. Don’t forget that a solid corporate wardrobe can be bought by shopping around for the best value, as opposed to only selecting high-end name brands.
A lot of stores offer free tailoring and it is wise to tailor your clothing to provide you with perfect fitting. Buy your accessories and shoes along with outfits so that you choose a complete look that goes well with each other and looks ideal on you.
- Clothes reveal self-esteem
When your choosing a work dress, always remember that what you wear will always boost and reveal your self esteem. We all know that clothes that are not fitting well, or are torn, or messy shows a deprived sense of self worth. Through what people see outside of you, they get a picture of your inside. If you keep this in mind, you will always be cautious of what you wear.
- Pay attention to the detail
Accurate grooming comprises of trimmed mustache and beard, manicured nails, clean, neat and attractive style of hair plus appropriate amount of makeup and accessories.
- Be clean and fresh even for casuals
Paying attention to details is not just for formal wears as it applies even to casual dress code in the workplace. Staying neat and clean with fresh and ironed clothes sends an impression that you respect your work and profession. If your peers are in casuals and not groomed well, do not follow their example but stay groomed and be an exception so that when a superior passes by, you stand out.
- Understand your industry
With the advent of technology and the internet, clothing for the workplace has turned a bit more casual in few professions while others still remain very conservative. Don’t forget you must be dressed up well to reflect your job. Whenever you go out for shopping, you must take into account your company’s dress code. You can be versatile in accordance to your company’s dress code.
- Strategic shopping
Note that the quality of your clothing speaks a lot about you as a professional, thus choose good quality materials. It is always clever to choose pieces that will remain in the trend for quite a while, so you remain trendy with the clothes showcasing your worth. We believe that men must spend more in blazers and shirts on the other hand women must invest more in shoes, belts and purses.
- Organize your closet
You must keep your closet organized. You should arrange clothes according to their appropriateness to workplace and keep them in their designated place. Doing this will spare you the morning struggle to get something apt to wear for work.
15. Look up to your superiors and not the peers
Note that you can easily know the acceptable way of dressing up by taking note of what your superiors wear and following them. Maybe all of your peers are in jeans at work but you are wearing plain trousers in accord with your higher-ups. It will show your superiors that you are more serious about your work and your attitude would display that you are a more promising candidate for promotion.
16. Know the difference between following and copying
Have it in mind that there is a thin line between following someone and simply copying them. When it is said that you must follow your superiors on clothing, keep in mind to not replicate their ties or wear the same kind of suit or keep replicating your entire closet with the same clothes as your senior. You must go for professional attires that can be comparable but which works well for you.
17. Always be appropriate even on casual days
You surely are being permitted to wear something casual, but it does not mean you have to wear something that is illustrating what you want to do in the weekend. Beach wears or party wears or simple shorts must all be neglected.
18. Go for apt shoes
We suggest you go for footwear that you are comfortable walking in, is appropriate for work and which speaks of your profession. Don’t forget that Flip-flops and heels are surely not good for a working environment. Formal shoes for both men and women are apt. Sneakers and wedge heels shoes for men and women respectively should be appropriate for casual days.
19. Pen down your goals and have them in your memory
We suggest you write down your goals and place it around your mirror. Ensure the mirror is a long mirror so that you can see yourself from top to bottom. When you look at yourself, check whether you reflect what you want to be? If not then try to look like one, if yes, you surely are ready to go to work.
In conclusion, indeed dressing for success in business is quite simple when you comply to a few simple rules. Opt for classic professional pieces; maintain a clean, well-groomed image and whenever you are unsure of the dress code, over-dress rather than taking the casual route.
We also acknowledge that dressing for success will take considerable time and effort, but the result is impressive. You will appear and feel more confident and assertive. You will stand out of the crowd of your company as a professional. Remember that you have only five seconds to make a great first impression. By dressing like a sophisticated business man, you can make those first five seconds count.