Studies show that people start forming impressions of us within mere seconds of first seeing us. In other words, your image speaks well before you ever get the chance to open your mouth. Without getting too technical, it’s all a matter of non-verbal communication.
The good news is that you can control the impressions you make or the non-verbal messages you’re sending out. In professional situations such as an interview, sales call or important business negotiation, your professional appearance and non-verbal messages can help get you the job, sale or seal the deal. Here are a few general tips.
-First and foremost, remember everything counts! Making sure every detail of your appearance is taken care of sends a non-verbal message that you pay attention to details. Employers like that!
-People really notice shoes. Ensure your shoes are clean, well polished and don’t show any signs of wear. Again, it’s the attention to details. Also, if you’re wearing a skirt, you need to be wearing heels at least two inches high. If you can’t wear heels, it’s better to wear pants.
-Make sure your clothing, accessories (including glasses), and hairstyle is up to date. Keeping current shows you’re aware of what’s going on in the world around you. It also sends messages that you’re flexible, a quick learner and that your skills are up to date.
-Whether you’re in a business casual or traditional business suit environment, wear a jacket. Structured jackets make your body just a little bigger, giving you stature and presence. The design details of a structured, tailored jacket can help send out messages that you’re authoritative, official, credible, persuasive, more formal, precise, and stable.
While you may be in an interview situation or business meeting, and more than likely you’re doing plenty of conversing, your image can be your silent cheerleader. It can say all kinds of key, positive messages about yourself that you might feel silly saying out loud.
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