First impressions matter, virtually or in-person. “Your appearance, makeup, hair and clothes are as important as your smile. When you project an image of confidence, you are more likely to succeed in business and social relationships,” according New York image consultants.
Whether you’re seen or not, participating in a virtually event doesn’t mean that you have to forget about how you look.
Nowadays, with office-casual attire accepted in most corporate environments, and given that you can work from home in your PJs (if you feel like it), you might under-estimate the value of business attire in a virtual meeting or event environment. Lazing around in PJs or shorts and a tee-shirt with tousled hair makes you look and feel unprofessional. Even if you’re not on video during your virtual event, the way you look definitely affects the way you perform, speak and think!
Check out The CBS Interactive business network’s savvy video about dressing for business.
When you attend a virtual event where you’re seen by your colleagues, consider the following seven tips to make sure that you come across professionally and feel good doing it:
1. Focus on the upper half of your body since head and shoulders are usually the most visible on a webcam.
2. Make sure that the background around you is neat and tidy.
3. Dress professionally. Your attire and grooming are important for you to feel and act more business-like.
4. Make sure that your hair is clean and styled, teeth brushed and face washed and/or shaved. Women, if you normally wear make-up, apply it as usual, and use some powder to get rid of any of those shiny spots.
5. Sit up straight. It shows that you’re interested and paying attention, plus, good posture helps keep your energy level up.
6. Wear a plain shirt or top, or one that has a small insignificant design. Heavily patterned, brightly colored, or too detailed-oriented garments will distract your audience away from your message.
7. Avoid gaudy jewelry like large earrings and chunky necklaces – another major distraction.
The Golden Rule is that “understated works best.” However, even though you’re concentrating more on the upper part of your body, don’t ignore the lower half. If you dress the part, you’ll be the part, geared up for your virtual event success.
Written by Susan A. Friedmann, CSP, The Tradeshow Coach, Lake Placid, NY, internationally recognized expert working with companies to increase their profitability at tradeshows. Author: “Riches in Niches: How to Make it BIG in a small Market” and “Meeting & Event Planning for Dummies.” www.thetradeshowcoach.com & www.richesinniches.com.