Here I was at a client today (I'm not Dylan Jones by the way), typing up a document when I was asked where I get my clothes from. Raising an eyebrow to the individual and casting a glance away from my keyboard, expecting a cheeky or dodgy remark, I asked, “why?”
See, the reason for this is that I am currently within a great corporate team where suits are the uniform of choice. After all, these are corporate issues, so we must all dress up in shirts, suits and tie. Well, all except me and a few others. You see, as much as I enjoy wearing a suit, I believe that there is a time and a place for one.
Anyway, the individual mentioned that he and a few others were heading over to a client, or potential client, for a meeting or pitch and that word had reached them that suits were a ‘no, no.’ Panic descended amongst him and a few others. The mere thought of going suit-less, well it was just difficult, confusing. Another hurdle to overcome to get the client or potential on their side.
Comments such as, “don’t they know we do corporate?” and , “I just don’t know how we should look!” came forth. I suggested dressing down, which really felt like asking Tom Ford to skip into the pub-shoe of choice, the Reebook classic. You know what I mean. Anyhow, they knew that it had to be done. I asked who the client was and on hearing this gave them my advice. To much laughter I added that maybe Gok Wan should come in to give them a style make over. No idea how that went down.
Anyhow, it really did make me think about how PRs dress and how we should dress? And if there are no-no’s in how we should present ourselves. After all, a suit can look the part and inspire confidence within a certain group of people, while others, as sharp as you might look, will think of you as stuffy, not flexible, not creative. Dressing for pitches or meetings is a minefield, which is best walked through with confidence.
While it would be ok to go with the newest jeans from Japan to a client, other creatives might see this as just opulence, where style might be more important to you than substance. Pre judging is comment place in our job, in our industry. As PRs we always want to make a good impression, even if we have to compromise our values, which is not right.
The next day, the group headed over, had the meeting and came back, with the job in the bag. And how did they look? Well, who cares. Job done!