Most work places either have a uniform or a dress code which employees are expected to adhere to. Especially in organisations that predominantly deal with business-to-business and recruitment. Often this is a bug bear of many employees and can challenge even the most stylish of individuals if their casual appearance is somewhat removed from their work appearance.
According to a survey conducted by MRI (Management Recruiters International), more than one third (34.2%) of executives polled think that business casual dress has gone too casual, eroding respect. Another study conducted by two economists, the Hammermesh-Biddle project, revealed that attractive people have higher incomes. This was true even for construction work, telemarketing, and other jobs that did not require public contact. To highlight this point, the Wall Street Journal article announcing the project's findings was named 'Good Looks Can Mean a Pretty Penny on the Job.'
The importance of appearance in today's market is critical and intrinsically linked to how you are perceived by co-workers and potential clients and employers alike. Projecting the image of success, strength and capability through your appearance is crucial when making a first impression - but should not be confused with being a natural 'stunner'.
If you're planning on going for that promotion or have been out of work and need to get back on the employment pony, follow these tips to keep you on trend and tip top for the new autumn season:
1) Ladies, I am aware it is a cliche, but let's be honest, a good shoe with a heel is always a win, it improves posture, lengthens the legs and forces you to walk tall and stride out. Gents, bin the loafers, they weren't good in 2004, they certainly aren't any better now. Go for a classic brogue, there are various kinds available, ranging from modest and classic to pointy and flamboyant. Next do an excellent range of ladies work shoes and Burtons menswear can usually provide a few on trend styles for the gents.
2) Sharp clean lines and structure are key trends for tailored looks for men and women this season. Zara's new fall line for men and women is the bees knees and their outerwear range is some of the best available on the high street.
3) Speaking of outerwear, the seasons are changing and as the dark nights draw in, to accompany your new shoes and sharp tailoring an appropriate work coat is a must, especially if you attend appointments or have to commute across a city via public transport. Key trends for men are knee length classics, preferably with leather lapels for a modern edgy look or opt for a classic mac. If you are able to splurge, Burberry Prorsum's fall range is always an excellent choice (consult the bank manager first). Ladies, military is big this season - think double breasted boxy styles with buttons, go to Topshop or Karen Millen if you're on a budget, if you've already consulted the bank manager try Chloe.
4) Colour is key, ox blood red is massive this season along with navy blue, dark green, grey and nude hues. Monochrome is timeless and will always turn heads, and although it is a bold look, fairly easy for most to wear. Black is back this season, not as a safe bet, but supporting the grungy/goth looks that strides the catwalks. So if you're going for black, go all out. It's not for the faint hearted, but if you can pull it off it translates into a great work wear look.