Dress for the Occasion

After a visit to the Commercial Bank yesterday, I decided to have an early simple lunch in a hawker food centre. The hawker, whom I frequented often, looked at me and expressed his surprise "Wah, you are really well dressed today". Hmm ... it did not cross my mind that I was well dressed. I was in my blue jeans, dark coloured collar T-shirt, a pair of suede leather shoes and hair well groomed. Then, I remembered ... I was not in my "casual home attire of short pants, round colour short sleeve T-shirt, slippers and dishevelled hair which he was familiar with.

Quickly, I responded saying "I just came from the Bank" ... The hawker friend, on hearing my response, smiled and thought that I was clever. Yes, we all need to dress for the right occasion.

Then I realised that I had dressed appropriately, in my opinion, for the visit to the Bank as I was meeting a Bank Officer to address some issues. I had subconsciously avoided my normal "home casual wear" as I had wanted to be taken seriously and professionally by the Officer.

Dressing well for an occasion will definitely enhance a person's image and personality, confidence and influence felt by the other party in whom you are engaging in a conversation, negotiation or interview. It is all about perception in personality, truth, credibility and reliability.

The determinant factor to dress appropriately is thus "what is the occasion? what subject matter would you be discussing, who will be attending? where is the function or meeting going to be? is the function casual, ceremonial or official? ... and a host of other questions ...

You may need someone to guide you along initially, get some tips from relevant books or learning through observing how others dress ... or go for coaching class on grooming, dressings and business etiquettes.

Thus, to dress well, not "under-dress" or "over-dress", for a right occasion is one of the key enablers in contributing towards image building and success. It leaves impressions, or in today's jargon, your footprints in the other party's mind. It is a "game-changer" for you!

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