Growing up in a fame-hungry society and a world that praises reality television, it is easy to think that becoming successful is as easy as posting a funny or provocative photo on social media.
A good reputation is vital in business. People talk, especially in close-knit communities like Acadiana; and when they do, you need to make sure they have something good to say — not only about your work, but also about you.
The first step to becoming successful is not necessarily being able to market or sell an incredible product or idea right off the bat. Yes, those skills should be developed along the way to reach the high goals and standards of business, but before you can sell or present anything, you need to get through the door. And to get through the door, you must first sell yourself.
There are simple things people can do to create an environment for their own success. One of those things is dressing the part. Most people will tell you that dressing the part for a job is limited to a suit and tie or pencil skirt, cardigan and heels, but dressing the part can also be rocking a creative T-shirt and blazer or a colorful dress.
With creativity booming in Acadiana, and therefore creative jobs growing rapidly, it is important to note that not every job is tailored to the “corporate style.” The goal is to always dress for the occasion and the environment you will be working in. No matter what you wear, it should always be thought out, put together and worn with purpose and confidence.
Another easy way to sell yourself’ is to have a consistent, value-driven work background. Whether it is from your university professors or previous co-workers, maintaining a good impression of kindness and a valued work ethic are qualities people will find out well before they even see your face.
Selling yourself is key to growing in business. It doesn’t matter if you actually do plan on running your own business or you are an employee of someone else’s organization, you will always be the “face” of your own brand. And like it or not, people will judge you based on your appearance and reputation.
So before you start looking outward on your professional journey, you should always look in the mirror first and make sure that the face of the brand you want to be is yours.
Allison Babin, marketing manager for Courtesy Automotive Group, earned a degree in marketing from the University of Louisiana in Lafayette in 2011. She began her career in radio/website sales. She lives in Lafayette with her husband Jy and their English bulldog Stella.
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