Recent surveys show that on average we take approximately 20 minutes each morning to decide what we will wear to work that day.
So why do we take so long to decide and why do we worry so much?
It really shouldn’t matter what we wear; we should all be able to fully rely on our natural abilities, our skills, and our expertise. Unfortunately, that is not always enough because as humans we arehard-wiredd to judge first on what we see and of course what we first see when we first spot someone is generally what it is that they are wearing. We all know that we shouldn’t judge people based on what they are wearing but it is hard not to and so being aware of how we present ourselves can help us be judged correctly and not misjudged.
In general, we want people to think well of us, we want to be liked and we want to be respected. By having a unique personal brand, we can ensure that we represent the best version of ourselves.
Building your personal brand starts of course with defining your brand, deciding how you want to be regarded and how you want to be known. Really understanding what makes you different and what is important to you can really help to define your true values. Once you start to really focus on your values it is easy to be genuine, congruent and consistent with your brand. You can be the real true you.
Having defined your brand, you can really start to become clear how you will dress your brand so that you consistently represent your brand in the way that you look.
You really can start to walk your talk.
You can start to define your personal brand in the way that it looks, it sounds, it behaves and it feels.
Is the way your answer the phone and the way that you talk in meetings consistent with how you want to be known?
Is your body language truly reflecting your brand values?
We all use company branding to project messages about our company and to attract potential clients and deals. In the same way you can use your own personal brand, you are the shop front to your business. People do business with people long before they buy products and services. We all know the importance of building good relationships and having a well-defined strong personal brand can more easily help you attract the right relationships. Who do you want to attract? Who is your target customer? We are all aware of the fact that like attracts like so if you are not presenting yourself correctly you could be attracting the wrong type of client. If you value high standards, quality and want to attract clients with the same values who will invest in your services and products you need to represent that high quality, status and excellence in your image.
No one but you can define your brand and your brand is unique to you. Your true brand is what is most appropriate for you. You should look and behave appropriately for you and your business, your industry, not anyone else! What is your appropriate?
Your personal brand, your shape, your lifestyle, your personality, your budget, your location, your clients.
We all have different requirements from what we wear and no one focus is right. It is important to be consistent and genuine.
Think about what is most important for you when you dress for business. Whilst looking the ‘tallest and slimmest’ you can, may be the main focus for a date or, looking ‘up to date’ may be the most important goal if meeting close friends, dressing for business is more likely to focus on how best way you can really represent your skills, your expertise, your brand values and your experience so that when you show up you really shine and stand out from that very crowded market-place that we operate in.
There is no right answer as to how to dress your brand but you should be true to yourself. Really own your true personal brand. Trying to be or look like someone else will just result in incongruency and can lead to distrust.
No matter how much attention you have given it in the past you already have a personal brand. The question to ask yourself is, is it really working for you?
If you are not standing out and not being noticed for the right reasons it may be time to build your true personal brand.
Be unique, be yourself but be the best you can be because it really is all about YOU.