How to look sharp, smart and professional at work
Looking ‘professional’ is the desired image of every working individual.
But what does it really mean and how can you look ‘professional‘?
While many people are able to describe a professional appearance as the overall image that looks smart, sharp and clean, most find it hard to elaborate further on how exactly this can be achieved.
In fact, by looking sharp, smart and clean you will also project the key characteristics of a professional image which are ‘confidence, appropriateness and credibility’.
Below, we break it down for you on how you can enhance your image to look confident, appropriate and credible.
1. Confidence: Confidence in clothing mainly comes from knowing that what you wear is the best for your body type. Are you sure that the lengths and cuts you wear are highlighting and camouflaging in the right places ?
Understanding which styles work best for your body type is not just about your body shape but also about your body proportions. Creating a balance in proportions (upper body = lower body ) will help create a balanced look. This balance then conveys the symmetry that people find attractive. So if you have ever wondered why a certain dress makes you look short in the legs or makes your hips look big, its probably the design lines placed wrongly.
To further achieve sharp, smart silhouette pay attention to details that look unstructured and sloppy. Its exactly the reason why a well tailored suit cuts a sharp silhouette. For women, for instance, blouses with shoulder seams that sit at the edge of your shoulder (black top below) will give more structure than no seams or seams that are below the shoulder (white top below). The dropped shoulders are more suited for softer relaxed look.
3. Credibility: Human beings look for non-verbal clues to match the verbal messages. The credibility of what you say, meaning the quality of being believable/ trustworthy, therefore is conveyed also by your clothes and your actions. The quality of your clothing hence plays a big role in helping project that trustworthy image.
While branded clothing do promise a certain level of quality and craftsmanship, they are not the only option for an effective image. Wear the best you can afford and dress for where you want to reach next in your career. Pay attention to the condition of your clothes and accessories.
Fabric type should also be suitable for the weather. Hence, a well fitted dress in polyester may not have the same impact as a well fitted dress in a silk or silk-cotton blend.
Our image consultant’s tip: Clothes convey your level of success, competence, trustworthiness and sophistication. Work on all three aspects mentioned above to ensure that your image works for you at all times.