Business image and public perception has long been a vital focus and concern of any company. While this idea may have changed somewhat with the global rise of social media usage and a continued increase in online shopping, maintaining a professional image remains crucial.
A professional image can take a long period of time to establish and is comprised of efforts such as marketing, branding, advertising and building strong customer or client relationships. With that said, here are some reasons why professional business attire can be crucial to the success of a business.
A Direct Reflection
Research published by Forbes has stated that first impressions can be vital, as evolution has given rise to the ability to make fast judgements which once formed, often prove impossible to change. Therefore, as the powerhouse of a business, it is the staff who perhaps have the largest ability to create and even retain a company’s image.
Personal presentation has the power to instil a sense of trust, ability and confidence. Therefore, how an employee engages with – and presents themselves to – clients or customers, directly reflects upon company attitude and image.
Obviously, professional attire has a different meaning depending upon the type of business. Professions that require a higher degree of client trust and confidence, such as law and finance, will demand more traditional business dress, such as a suit. Whereas those in artistic vocations tend to be at more at liberty to express their work through their clothing.
As well as appropriate clothing choices, small finishing touches can make all the difference. For example, a premium branded watch or a smart pair of cufflinks will complete a banker’s outfit, while an individual working in the fashion or jewellery industry could become a walking mannequin and wear the company’s creations.
Strike A Balance
While employees should always dress in a way that is appropriate to their profession, unless there is a standard company uniform, a balance must be struck between the wants of the employer and the right to individual freedom.
Finding a balance can be particularly difficult during warm weather, as employees aim to mix office and weather appropriate dress. To avoid this issue, employers should have a clear dress code in place and make it readily available to all employees.
No matter what the type of business, employees have the power to make or break brand perception. As such, professional business attire should be taken seriously by both employers and employees.