IHouse CLG workshop - Dress for Success

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Vivian Tan, Class of 2017

Written by Vivian Tan, Class of 2017

I like attention. I absolutely love the idea of having a brand for myself. I prioritize personal branding but at some point in my life I find myself having to conform to the style set by society. In fact, due to technological advances, the proliferation of the social media and increased globalization, the rat race of shining through one’s career with a personal brand is becoming more intense over the past decade. It is a powerful strength to have because it sends an unblemished message about who you are and what you have to offer.
Personal brand is crucial towards creating first impressions when you meet a stranger in the business world for the first time-it could be your new boss, a potential client, or even a valuable asset on your team. The stranger’s brain breaks down that very first impression within 7 seconds- 55% for image, 38% for non-verbal communication and 7% for verbal communication.

Realizing that importance, the International House held a workshop on personal branding, “Dress for Success” as a part of its Connect. Learn. Grow. (CLG) series this semester. Presented by Monique Turrentine, a Sector Manager working with the Career Department in Fuqua School of Business, the workshop not only gave students insight on how to dress whenever they attend recruiting events, but it also provided students with valuable information on how to present themselves whenever communicating professionally.
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The talk covered detailed topics on how to dress for Business Casual, Business Professional, Evening Attire and also Industry Dress Codes. From the color of the shirt and tie to sheer hosiery and shoes, students learned that there is a subtle yet distinctive imprint left on a stranger regarding the attire they would be presenting in a working world. Hands were constantly raising with very interesting questions from the curious participants, who were diligently taking notes and making sure that they would be able to ace their personal brand in the near future.

Besides advising the students on how to dress, Ms. Turrentine touched on how one should polish their looks. Students were taught how to choose clothes that fit, the number of suits one should have and how to match their accessories with their outfit of the day.  Personal grooming was also covered in the talk. The female students were told which color of nail polish to choose from and the kind of shoes to wear while the male students were advised on their size of ties and managing their personal hygiene, i.e facial hair. There was also a list of recommended places to shop and groom compiled by Ms. Turrentine so that students who are planning to join the next recruiting event or attend an interview could visit. The workshop concluded with a crash course on interviewing tips and methods to write a resume.
To sum up my post, here’s a relatable quote from Orson Welles, “Create your own visual style…let it be unique for yourself and yet identifiable for others”. Remember, your image is your brand!