Dress for Success When You Work Remotely

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The Brook Taverner Journal

Dress for Success When You Work Remotely

So, you finally have the opportunity to work from home. No more long commutes to the office or small talk in the break room. Now you get to enjoy your early morning coffee for a few minutes longer while you commute from the kitchen table to your home office.

Just because you work from home now doesn’t mean you have to let yourself go, though. You may think it means you can sit around all day in your pyjamas and loungewear, and you can. However, you probably shouldn’t. Dressing for success isn’t just for the office. It applies to your remote work as well. In fact, your attire can have a big impact on your success at home.

Dressing for Success and Its Impact on Productivity

While you might think you can easily get things accomplished during the day, no matter what you’re wearing, studies have found that your clothes can affect your productivity and performance greatly. Psychologists believe that people adopt the traits of the clothes they wear because clothing is symbolic in our minds. Pyjamas, while comfortable, are relaxing and signal that it’s time to slow down for the day and get ready for bed. Men’s suits, on the other hand, leave you feeling authoritative, professional and trustworthy.

Getting up in the morning and putting on a business suit boosts your self-confidence and gets your mindset going in the right direction for personal success. You’re less likely to procrastinate because of this, making it easier to be productive.

You’re Not Always Alone

Another good reason to dress for success when you work from home? You aren’t always alone. Today’s technology makes it easy for you to be present at those board meetings even if you never step foot out of the house. Telepresence robots, for instance, are making a big splash in the business world these days. The telepresence robots are situated in the place of business and you are able to be seen and communicate with those in the office from home using your tablet or computer. Some of the robots are so advanced that you can control their movements, letting you ‘walk’ around the halls of the business and speak to others in real time.

Even if your business doesn’t use this type of advanced technology, you still may have a presence online through a web cam with business partners and clients. When they see you, they want you to appear trustworthy, business-like and authoritative.  While they may get a chuckle out of your mismatched pyjamas, that’s where the communication will end. They’d much rather see you wearing professional-looking suits during webinars and meetings because it tells them you take your work seriously.

Online Presence is Everything

For many, working from home means taking advantage of everything the internet has to offer. If you’re trying to promote your business or product, you may use the internet to write blogs or write reviews. You may also want to create video blogs to really show your customers exactly what they are buying. For these, your look is extremely important.

You don’t necessarily need to wear men’s suits for a video blog. It all depends on what you’re selling or trying to introduce to a consumer. A casual pair of chinos and a tweed jacket may be all you need to reassure them that you know what you’re talking about. Consider carefully the type of product or service you’re working with. Does your customer need a suited-up professional for it or will a kind stranger with a bit of know-how do?

You’ve got to Make Some Calls

Video calling is a technology that has been present for years, but we still take advantage of it every single day. It’s much easier sometimes to have a serious discussion when you’re face-to-face with someone. Video calling services like Skype let you do this.

Imagine you’re a customer or even a business partner at the other end of that phone call. What would you want to see when you answer? A man sitting around in his loungewear with bed head or a professional staring back at you with a pin-stripe men’s suit on and a power red tie? Most would choose the latter.

You Aren’t Always Home

Showing respect for your career, boosting your productivity and have the right online presence are some good reasons to suit up every morning when you work from home. However, there’s one other reason to change out of those pyjamas: you aren’t always working from home.

Maybe you visit the office on occasion, maybe you like to supplement your remote work with some coffee or tea at a local coffee house or maybe your printer simply ran out of ink. Whatever the reason, working from home doesn’t mean you’re trapped there for the rest of eternity. There will be plenty of times when you have to get out and see other people. You can’t do this in your loungewear.

Leaving the house doesn’t always require a suit, unless you’re going into the office. For a day of work at a local coffee house that supports WiFi or a trip to the grocery store, you can simply don a nice pair of trousers, a dress shirt and a men’s tweed jacket. This attire still says, “I’m a productive member of society” while remaining casual enough for your work at home.

Keep in mind that you may not always be alone- even when at your own house. Others may stop by to contribute to your business, like messengers with deliveries or even clients if you meet them at home. Being dressed and ready for their presence is important to making the right first impression.

Think working from home means you can lounge around all day in your pyjamas? Think again. In order to have the self-confidence you need and be as productive as you should be, dress for success even when you work remotely. Putting on men’s tweed jackets, men’s suits and more can help you make the right impression when it comes to virtual meetings and your online presence as well.

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