You may have watched a movie about business, maybe you saw a seminar or lecture, but a typical theme when discussing business is “the protection of the brand”. You will often hear that phrase used when someone is describing a huge corporation, but it’s not just corporations that have to worry about their brand – individuals do just as much, if not more.
Everything from your physical appearance to the stuff you put on social media matters. Some people believe that whatever you put out into the world you will get back, and that is certainly true when it comes to the business image.
If you carry yourself like a pro, you will be treated like one, if you carry yourself in the opposite fashion, people will avoid you. After all, why take a risk on someone who doesn’t care about how they come across?
Looking like a pro is important, so here are some key things to pay attention to when trying to present a proper business image.
Keeping up appearances
At every level of business, from a job interview, to getting a job, to getting a promotion, your success can be dependent on your looks.
Whether we agree with it or not, we are often judged on how we present ourselves, so if you want to be judged positively, you have to make the effort.
Now, this doesn’t mean that you should buy an expensive suit and do your best impression of Don Draper, just make sure that your appearance is on par with what you represent as well as what your company represents. Remember that it only takes a few seconds to make a first and lasting impression, so start off as you want to go on.
People tend to think that looking the part is all you need to do, but in the current age of Facebook and LinkedIn accounts costing people their jobs, the impression you make no longer stops at how you look in person.
It may sound like a cliché but you represent whatever company you work for or want to work for, at all times.
Whenever you post a regrettable picture on a website or social media account, you are sending a certain message out to the world that reads “I am unprofessional”. So, being constantly aware of what you are putting out into the world is important, but it doesn’t stop there.
Just as you can delete a negative, you can add a positive. Add online CVs, websites and smarten up your social media accounts to show to anyone who may be looking that you are 100% reliable at all times.
Behaviour and body language
Behaving well and displaying the right body language might sound simple and easy but the importance of it can make or break your career. Small things like a firm handshake and maintaining eye contact can change your life, so always be aware of how others view you, especially in office and job interview situations.
You can have a flawless Internet footprint and the sharpest of suits, but it all means nothing if you are making inappropriate jokes and yawning during important meetings. You are a walking advertisement for your capabilities, so always show off your good traits!
Other than following the advice above, one of the best things you can do is to remember to stay vigilant when maintaining your image. Looking, sounding and acting like a pro at all times will only benefit you in the business world; people want to work with smart, clean and competent individuals, which is why taking care of your image is incredibly important.
Author’s Bio: Susanne Loxton is a business enthusiast who combines her interest in career and development with a passion for writing. On a daily basis, Susanne works for Aubiz, a compendium of knowledge about companies in her native Australia.