Cleveland Business Connects

For immediate release (October 6, 2017) Media Contact: Judy Abelman Email: Phone: 440.725.8861...

To the ‘best dressers’ go the spoils

By Traci McBride

You make an impression everywhere you go and with everyone you meet. So, what do you want it to be?

For the most part, you do control it. Think of your “indelible impression” — is it a little dated and frumpy? Perhaps you want to look fresh and modern. Maybe you’re dressing a bit too young or even too old for your age. Do you feel as if you look too sexy for your profession?

Personal lesson: Decades ago, as a stay-at-home mom, I was looking for part-time employment. I decided to check out some companies before making a long-term commitment to work for them. So I had the idea of working for a temp agency. I decided the best way to “become a fly on the wall” was to be a receptionist, and I asked for assignments that were no longer than two weeks. Why just two weeks? Anyone can be on their best behavior for a few days to a week, but by week two, people show who they really are.

There were some great lessons I learned that were related directly to image. Remember, this was about 25 years ago — before I ever thought of starting a consulting business. This was a time when I was struggling with my style and self-image after being a stay-at-home mom for several years. Over one year, I noted all these details at six different companies in unrelated industries.

Those who were best dressed boasted the …Indelible1

  • nicest office
  • admiration of peers
  • more staff
  • more respect
  • little to no “busy work”
  • clean, organized desks with empty “to do” boxes
  • expressed the WOW factor

and were …

  • not necessarily qualified for the position they had
  • well compensated with the best benefit packages
  • invited to lunch, golf outings, and speaking engagements
  • happier and friendlier
  • confident

And those who were the WORST DRESSED/ frumpiest boasted the …Indelible2

  • over-flowing “to do” boxes
  • bagged lunch everyday
  • minimum compensation and basic benefits
  • low self-esteem
  • the “poor me” attitude

and were …

  • the “staff” to the best dressed
  • often overqualified for their current position
  • often unnoticed until needed to do the work
  • errand runners
  • invisible
  • scapegoats
  • working late or weekends when there are deadlines
  • trainers to the newbies
  • fill-ins when others are sick or on vacation
  • clock watchers
  • unhappy and complainers

Observing these traits was a real eye-opener for me and helped me decide, both consciously and subconsciously, who and what I wanted to be.

Which list appeals to you? Change your image; change your life!

Traci McBride is the wardrobe stylist of TeeMcBee Image Consulting and is a longtime supporter of nonprofit Dress for Success-Cleveland.




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