High Impact First Impressions

Much has been written about the power of first impressions.  A first impression acts like a filter through which all subsequent information passes through.

When we first meet someone, our primal instincts kick in to help us quickly determine friend or foe? Can you help me or hurt me?  Are you an equal in my tribe?  Are you a leader in the tribe?

While many of us do not consider ourselves to be superficial, the reality is that we make judgments about an individual by what we see to enable us to determine the answers to the above questions.

As a result, we cannot minimize the impact we have on others visually.  This takes into account physical demeanor as well as clothes and grooming.

I made the choice several years ago to work with someone to enhance my personal style to make more consistently positive first impressions.

By upgrading my attire, little by little, I discovered that the change not only had a positive impact on my professional credibility but it also improved my mindset.  I felt greater confidence that what I communicated visually was in alignment with my verbal, vocal and visceral messaging.

In the design and construction industry there is a broad range of styles that are exhibited.  Some of what I have observed fails to enhance professional credibility and actually diminishes the image many of these professionals want to project.

While we don’t expect field personnel to dress for the office, I find that “Business Casual” is too often more “Casual” than “Business”.  The question to ask is this:  Is the visual impression I am making in alignment with what I want to communicate visually, vocally, verbal and viscerally?  If you are uncertain, it might be worth getting some help in this arena.  Spending a ton of money all at once is not necessary.  By making affordable, smart upgrades to optimize your visual impact, you are truly investing in yourself and your career.

I began exploring a few on-line personal shopper services because I hate going to the mall.  I was skeptical at first but very pleasantly surprised.  Not only did the items fit exceptionally well, but they looked great and were items I likely would not have selected for myself.  The best part:  I could set price points for the various pieces to add to my wardrobe so my budget was something I could establish and maintain.  And it was all done without stepping foot into a mall.

Here are a few resources to explore in order to assist you in making the investment in your visual impact each month through on-line personal shopper services.

For Women:

     Stitch Fix: 

They even give you cards to show various ways to use the pieces they send you.

     Style Me 

For Men:


     Men’s Style Lab: