Business Too Casual
Note: This sales tip is best consumed by video.
If a sales tip video showed up on your doorstep delivered from an unkempt, unshaven source claiming to be an expert, how long would it take you to look past the visual and hear the message?
Business clothing standards have certainly changed over the years and it could be argued that the bar of acceptability has fallen significantly, but what hasn’t changed is this: While we don’t want to judge others based on appearance, appearance is part of the message.
Your job as a salesperson includes representing your company and your profession. It’s hard enough to get someone’s attention, so when we finally do get an audience — be it via Zoom or in person — that first impression becomes critical and even before we open our mouth to speak, we are communicating and the customer is receiving.
When I started in sales, we wore two-piece or three-piece suits every day. I think it was in the late 1980s that Casual Friday became a thing, followed by business casual. I remember walking into the office of a print equipment manufacturer and meeting with their head of training on Friday. This had to be 25 years ago. A man walked towards me wearing flip-flops, dirty blue jeans, and a T-shirt more suitable for changing the oil in your car.
That was business too casual!
Look, you are welcome to dress anyway you like and you are free to disagree with me (even vehemently!). However, I promise you it will never, ever hurt you when you dress to impress.
A client I was speaking to yesterday inadvertently gave me the idea for this sales tip when he was speaking about a presenter who followed me at a recent conference. While his message turned out to be valuable, my customer remarked, “he started at a disadvantage simply by an appearance I felt was disrespectful to the audience.”
So, if you’re going to show up looking like roadkill, at least wear a tie.
Want more? Bill can be reached through his website, SalesVault.pro or by calling 781-934-7036.