Professional Appearance- why you should care!

Hi Folks.  Sorry for the long pause since my last posting.  It’s been a hectic time.

I’d like to share a version of a speech I gave at a Pecha Kucha style event last week.  I thought it would be a perfect to share with you.  Here goes…

When you dress professionally, you look professional.  When you look professional, you feel professional and when you feel professional, you play better….

When a reporter, in the early 1980’s, asked Glen Sather (then head coach of the Edmonton Oilers) what was with the suits and ties that he made his young players wear on their way to games, this phrase (above) was his response.  Today, the NHL has a dress code but back in the day, it didn’t.  Of course, the Edmonton Oilers of the early 1980s were made up of young, highly-skilled players. But Sather felt in those early days that the team lacked some of the maturity, work ethic – and ultimately, professionalism – that was needed if they were going to reach their full potential. So, one of the things he did to rectify this was to institute a mandatory dress code for game days.

It’s interesting when you think about it. When they are actually “at work”, hockey players are wearing hockey equipment and uniforms. But Sather felt that if they drove to the rink in a suit and walked into the dressing room looking professional, that that would translate into improved performance on the ice. He, like any good coach and general manager, was always looking for that little extra something that would put his team over the top.

It was important to not only build the skills of these young professional players but also have them think and act and dress like professionals too!

With L2 Style, my message is similar; you might be smart, competent, skilled and talented at what you do but, as I just mentioned, that’s simply not enough in the business world.

As you know, my goal is to start changing how people think about their overall presence and appearance in the workplace… whether it’s in client situations, in team situations, or in interview situations.

Dressing professionally gets you in the right mindset which impacts things like:

  • Your performance or productivity
  • Your confidence
  • Your personal level of credibility

Dressing professionally not only gets YOU in the right mindset, but it also helps others develop the “right” perception of you and could impact things like:

  • The impressions you make
  • Leadership
  • Your level of credibility with others

Here’s an example I’d like to share.  Which professional services firm would you rather hire?
This one?

Or this one?


You get me point…. There is a reason why professional services firms have offices in high office towers that are very-well-furnished rather than a basement suite of a strip mall.  Now both firms probably have the same level of competence and skill but a positive office appearance gives their clients a level of comfort or confidence in their skills.

Is it fair? No

Is it true? Absolutely!

What I do is get people to start thinking about is this:  What do you want your professional appearance to say about YOU?

Think about this:

  • Do you have a positive presence when you walk into a room?
  • Do people form the “right” opinions about you and who you are?

I get people to start and continue this conversation… and take action!

……So, wonderful readers, now that you’ve heard what I have shared with others, I’d love to hear from you!  Hit me up and tell me what you think of this.