Enhance Your Professional Image

While image isn’t everything, it definitely contributes to how others perceive you and your business.  The last thing you want to do is damage your reputation by not attending to your professional image.

In a recent Inc.com article, Kevin Daum shares 7 ways to “Project a Successful Image.”  Here we share 4 of his tips:

1. Look good for any occasion.  Whether or not you like it, your attire sends a message about your professionalism.  When you become sloppy, your reputation becomes sloppy as well.  But you must be thoughtful and know how to dress for the occasion and the individuals you’re meeting with.  While a power suit may be appropriate for a business meeting, there may be a different expectation for luncheons, seminars, etc. 

2. Master the art of intelligent conversation.  Daum explains, “If all you talk about is your company, your job, your family, or the Kardashians, you won’t be considered at the top of your or anyone else’s game.”  Like the clothes you wear, the things you say reflect back onto you and your business.   Working to enhance your knowledge, either through continuing education and training courses, reading or current events, will enable you to carry on intelligent and engaging conversations.  And, if you don’t already, practice writing and speaking correctly because that gives an impression as well.

3. Be charitable.  We don’t want to encourage you to be charitable simply because of the image it helps portray, but the truth is, some of the wealthiest and most influential business men and woman are also philanthropists, looking to use a portion of their wealth to benefit others.  Daum suggests you give of your time, energy, expertise, and, if possible, your financial resources.  He says, “Just find a cause and give.  People will notice and respect you for it.  Including the most important person…you.”

4. Make people feel important.  Arrogant, condescending people are no fun to be with. Regardless of how wealthy or successful you are, you’ll only continue to prosper, and feel gratified on your journey, if you lift others.

Your image precedes you and will influence your journey to success or failure.  Attend to your image by applying some of these tips and see where it takes you.

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Daum, Kevin.  “Project a Successful Image: 7 Ways.”  8 February 2013  Inc.com