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Five Styles That Breed Success At the Work Place

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If you’re like many people who are looking to succeed in the work place, you probably know that a good appearance can do wonders for how you feel — and with that confidence you’ll probably see results in how people respond to you. When we feel good about ourselves, others feel good about us too. So here are just a few ways that dressing for work can make us more successful — and more importantly, more happy.

1. The Traditional Suit
For most businesses, the classic look more or less came down to a pretty simple style: A navy blue or gray suit, with a light blue or white shirt and tie. In the upper-echelons of American business, in fact, a standard outfit was a Brooks Brothers suit and Alden shoes in this style. So much so that when the book “The Man in the Gray Flannel Suit” was released, the title essentially referred to what was then the sine-qua-non of business wear.

And the thing is, depending on the firm where you’re working, this may not have changed much — and if it has, it doesn’t mean it didn’t have its place. After all, a traditional look can make us think of traditional values we may hold dear — and in business, our values sometimes speak louder than words.

2. Semi-Formal For the Win
If your business offers ways to dress semi-formally — maybe for one day a week, or it’s just company policy to let employees choose their mode of dress — know that style doesn’t have to come at the expense of comfort. Good polo shirts, coupled with a pair of khakis, provide classic looks while retaining a durable and comfortable feel, especially on summer days. Coupled with a blazer, they can also ramp up the formality at a moment’s notice.

3. A New Take on an Old Style
With the success of shows like “Mad Men,” which reach back to men’s style circa the early 1960s, there has been a massive gear change in men’s fashion toward slim-cut suits. The benefits here are that the smooth and svelte lines of such suits, if fitted correctly, can do wonders for your appearance, providing a slimmer and more athletic look in a business environment. Coupled with a thinner tie, it’s a great way to bring style to the office, without breaking any dress codes.

It doesn’t stop with a form fitting suit, to complete this look the details are going to matter. Bringing in specialty accessories to bring it all together is going to make or break the suit. An easy way to bring this to life is with a tie clip or a pair of cufflinks that will stand out and keep that clean cut look. Finally it is important to note that you can never go wrong with a unique yet classic watch. Breaking out a timepiece will never go out of style and you can wear them with suits or whatever else you choose.

4. Keeping an Awareness of New Fashions
The internet has brought about an age for us in which learning about new fashions is only a few clicks away. And finding the right menswear blog offering cool tips for what you’ll want to wear in the new season has never been easier, with sites like offering great looks to those who have a good eye for clothes.

5. A Good Pair of Shoes
Finally, when you’ve got a great pair of shoes, you have both great health (the better posture will serve you well after a long day standing or sitting at a desk) and a great appearance. That’s why a good pair of shoes is essential to a good outfit. Brands like Bass and LL Bean often provide good discounts on great shoes and have provided excellent footwear to customers for generations.

This would also be the perfect time to break out your trendier shoes. There are a variety of boots that are extremely in style that would be perfect for a business casual. The dessert boots are classy look that brings together an outfit while giving it a vintage look. Another shoe that is trending are the Sperry boat shoes, the difference being that you can wear the boat shoes with a colorful neon sole. It creates a unique vibe throughout the whole outfit and it looks really impressive.

About the author: Hannah Whittenly is a freelance writer from Sacramento, California. A mother of two, Hannah enjoys writing on blogs of all niches.

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Phyllis Moore

    Thank you, these are great tips. I agree that taking the time and effort to be presentable and appropriate in the workplace is still very important. In a traditional corporate environment where the suit and tie is still expected, the wardrobe standards are already predetermined and it’s just a matter of conforming. It’s kind of like a school uniform; it removes the majority of your options.

    I think people run into difficulty with “business casual.” I have visited some offices these days where that kind of informal style is the everyday standard, and it can yield some dubious results as it’s very easy to wind up being too casual. I think the dressed down approach needs just as much time and attention — if not more so — to be presentable. Yet if the person succeeds in getting the right look, it will help him to feel more confident. As you point out, he may have to make the effort to stay current with trends.

  • Sharon

    Awesome article! In current society, there is such a stretch between traditional business and newly emerging entrepreneurship that I think people either get confused or forget the classics. Of course, some industries lend themselves to more creative freedom in dress codes – but classic business is not gone nor out of style.
    I agree that it can be beneficial to pay attention to how you present yourself no matter what your field or setting. There is always a way to blend professional with comfortable without ditching the latest trends. The few extra minutes in the morning can make all the difference in your day!
    Thanks again for a great article!

  • Nivlac

    This reminds me of me, this was written for me. I have been observing all but one :Semi-Formal For the Win, I am formal every workday , all day and this works like a charm. I am loved by many and hated by few at work. What the heck someone as got to find a fault, but at the end of the day i am respected for always being 100% professional all day every workday.Neatly and dapperly dressed. I need to get a copy of this to HR , so they send it around for the ones who don’t know better.


    • oivas

      Hi Nivlac,

      In fact, we do have semi-formal day and one of our customers actually expects us to be dressed down. No prizes for guessing that the day is Friday. Of course, you are right in the sense that most customers would still want us to be formally dressed even on Fridays. So, if you are 100% formally dressed then you do not have much challenges. 🙂

      Also, I will have this article forwarded to. Thanks!

  • Rand paul

    That was a really great article. Its so true that image is paramount in so many situations. In my work suits are compulsory but if they weren’t I would probably wear them anyway. Its very much psychological I feel when you are suited up. You feel stronger, more energetic and certainly that you are in a position of more authority.

  • oivas


    Those were really great points. The one that is most referred and the one on which I concur absolutely is the fact that the internet has brought styles and options from across the world, closer to us. Obviously, that is the same medium which has brought me to this wonderful article as well.

    Also, along with the shoes the belts matter too. When I was doing my Business Administration, one of our professors would stress on the need to match the shoe and belt color, as a matter of grooming. That is something I accept and have found incredibly true in professional life.

    Anyways, thanks for sharing!!

  • Danna Brown

    Well, these pointers make me proud to sit behind a desk. Too bad its an at home business. Maybe I’ll get dressed up all sassy like just to sit behind my computer and look professional. How fun! Well anyways this article is so true. Some of the simplest fashion trends tend to change the mood of the workplace.

  • Great tips on the meaning of formal attire and what it says to those you want to do business with. Still, I wonder if it is only applicable to certain niches. For example, I don’t care and will never know what a programmer I hire thousands of miles away is wearing nor would I expect him to care.

  • Great article and thank for sharing the different business styles of dress, very informative. You are right about how we dress and feel certainly expresses our attitude in more ways than one.

    Dressing for success and following that with a great mental attitude commands attention in such a way that it could be contagious. This is especially true when you are in a leadership position.

    • oivas

      Hi mominternet

      That is so true. When we have the right mental attitude even our attire is lined up to the task. It is as if our attitude takes care of all the things required.