You say so much before you open your mouth! Your image matters if you want to make a positive impression. Simply put – it’s the outward manifestation of who you are.

Whether we like it or not, research concludes that people DO judge you by how you look, act, and communicate. And it all starts with the infamous First Impression.

For example – Here’s something to consider. If you walked into a heart surgeon’s office and saw this man, what would you think? Likely you would be saying to yourself, “He doesn’t look like a heart surgeon!”

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Never doubt that people DO make judgments about you based on how you look. On the other hand, how would you like to hire this person?  

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Ask yourself if your appearance is aligned with who you are and what you want to be known for. But you don’t have to be stuffy – and you certainly should dress for the role.

Consider these tips on what to wear:

1 – If you’re working for a company that has dress guidelines, follow them. If the guidelines aren’t clear, ask.

2 – If you’re an entrepreneur, employees look to you to set the stage. What image do you want in the marketplace?

3 – If you’re in a job with no customer contact, there’s much more latitude. Having said that – don’t wear flip flops, torn jeans, plunging necklines, or tops that show the stomach. Yep – that’s a whole ‘nother story!

4 – If you have facial hair, groom it.

5 – If in doubt, don’t!

AUTHOR

 Fox News Contributor Valerie Sokolosky is a Master Personal Brand Strategist and pioneer in leadership presence and personal branding. A widely published author and founder of Valerie and Company, her executive coaching and training has helped companies large and small achieve their goals of increased productivity, profitability, and enhanced people skills. Find Valerie on twitter @ValSokolosky