Is your office attire appropriate for what you want to achieve? It’s impossible to make a neutral impression. Your professional business dress reflects the decisions you made, and nothing removes confidence as quickly as inappropriate office attire.
The styles, colors and accessories you choose all contribute to a non-verbal statement about who you are, and make an emotional connection with your viewer. A dark, conservative business suit is proper business attire in many industries, and sends a completely different message from a colorful shirt and casual pants.
You may not need a power look every day, but for a job interview, major presentation, or meeting with an important client, it’s important to know how to create a power look that sends the right message. And remember, you should always dress for the job you want, not the job you already have.
Think of the power of a business suit. We are conditioned to assume that a person wearing a dark suit is a competent professional. When you are presenting before a group or meeting clients in a formal setting, a matched suit projects the image of power and authority.
Men’s and women’s power look:
o Wear a matched suit. It is more formal than a jacket with contrasting pants or a skirt.
o Darker colors help you project a higher level of authority than lighter colors. Navy, charcoal or black suits are the most formal.
o Contrast dark and light. Wear a white or cream-colored shirt with your dark suit. The greater the contract of colors, the more powerful you will appear.
o Smoother, plainer fabrics in solid colors give you a formal business look. The more bulky, textured or patterned your fabric, the less formal you look.
o Keep your look simple. Wear a minimal amount of prints or patterns on shirts and ties. The fewer details and colors you have, the more power you project.
o Carry quality accessories. Add panache to your look with a leather or metal band for your watch, and a high quality briefcase or handbag.
o Shoes can make or break the look. Choose a classy but simple style, and make sure your shoes are polished and in good condition. Nothing ruins a power look faster than scruffy shoes and worn-down heels.
Dress to inspire confidence. People will be more likely to buy your product, or to want to work with you. You have to look the part to fit in.