Did you know that it takes roughly 30 seconds for another individual to make an assumption about you? Did you also know that 93% of how you’re judged is based on non-verbal cues like appearance, body language, grooming, posture and 7% is influenced by verbal communication and tones? It may come across as shallow but physical appearances do matter. The professional image you present and communicate will give the first impression and if good enough, will often be the last.

The Do’s

  • Dress To Impress
    “Dress the way you want to be addressed”, as stated by Bianca Frazier, is the mantra to keep in mind when getting ready. Most workplaces will have a dress code policy in effect but for safe measure: T-shirts, jeans, flip-flops, excessive makeup, pungent perfumes, revealing, sheer and incorrect sized clothing should be avoided at all costs. The aim is to be as least distracting as possible without compromising personal style and creativity.
  • Be Socially Savvy
    A prerequisite for success in today’s highly-connected and relationship-focused environment is being socially adept. Employees wish to interact with amiable and graceful colleagues. Most individuals prefer to have a productive day, not be bombarded with bickering, badmouthing, complaining and gossiping. Ensure you are making the right impression on your fellow workers and supervisors with your knowledge, optimism, social etiquette, civility and charm. The result of practising these traits will enrich personal and professional effectiveness and self-confidence.

The Don’ts

  • Be Inflexible
    Today’s economy demands that businesses do more with less. Roles and duties are not as defined as they were in the past and have become exchangeable. You may be required to partake in a project that is not listed in your job description. That is perfectly fine, as long as you have the technical and educational competence to do so. No job is too menial to be not taken seriously. Ensure all assignments are submitted on time and are completed with the same dedication as your regular tasks. Management will notice your alacrity and, consequently, take you one step closer to reach the top.
  • Misrepresent
    Trust and integrity are exemplary principles to adopt and apply. Employers want loyal, honest and hardworking individuals on their teams. Your words are as good as you are. Be who you are and do what you say you will. This applies to the credentials, references and experience listed on your résumé. Practice restraint and discretion when on social media, do not slander your employer and expect no one to find out. The potential negative impact of falsifying information on your résumé is not worth the risk of misjudgement.

Your professional image is not solely based on impeccable outer looks, although it is a major component. It reflects and encompasses proper conduct, personable soft skills, face-to-face interactions and integrity to shape your reputation. By following the tips listed above you will lay a solid foundation for success.

 

Tabbassam B. | DBPC Blog