Improving someone’s image deals with more than just the clothes they wear; it highlights their personal brand. Choice of dress, overall behavior, business and dining etiquette, and body language all contribute to the image they portray to others.
In this episode, Marc Bautis welcomes guest Sharon Kornstein, owner and founder of Image Design Consulting, to discuss ways you can start improving your image today. We’re all going to be back in the office soon and this conversation will assist anyone who is seeking to improve their personal image in a timely, affordable, and comfortable manner.
In this episode you will learn:
- How image consulting works
- How many business outfits you should have in your closet
- How often there are changes in trends
- What is important to look for when adding to your wardrobe
- Common image mistakes that people make
- What to wear to a job interview
- What is a virtual closet?
- And more!
Tune in now and be inspired to look and perform your best!
Are there other components of an image (other than fashion) that someone would look to improve if they wanted to improve their image?
There are several aspects to it. How you dress is important, but it’s also behavior, business and dining etiquette,body language, and nonverbal communication. It really all fits in together.
Fashion is one of the components. I like to talk about it more as your personal image. Personal brand is a big term right now, but it’s kind of a part of your personal brand because it’s how you look. You want to reflect you: your lifestyle, your job, your goals, your values. So you want to be fashionable, but you also want to be authentic.
What are some benefits of image consulting?
Gaining confidence is one. I help people feel better about themselves, and I help them control how others react to them. When you walk into a meeting, if you know you look the part and look your best, you feel more confident. Then, it is reflected in your actions and behaviors. It is also reflected in the person that you are speaking with; they get that feedback and it is a back-and-forth kind of thing.
What point does someone have to be to embrace image consulting?
It is all different points, but it is usually people who have experienced some kind of transition where they change firms and they feel like they need to dress a little differently to reflect the new firm. Or, maybe they have been in a situation where they have felt underdressed, they felt under-groomed, or they did not have the right outfit in their closet. In addition to helping people feel their best, I save them time and I save them money because they do not buy things that they do not end up wearing.
How does it work
It is a consultative approach because it is not a “one size fits all” kind of approach.
- First, I talk to people (whether it is on the phone, in person, or online) to find out what they exactly want to achieve and what is not working with their current wardrobe with a questionnaire.
- The next step is to meet them at their home and spend a half-day or so going through what they have in their closet.
- Then, we will come up with a shopping list and take them shopping.
What are some common mistakes that people make in fashion?
Fit and quality are really important. One mistake people make is that they sacrifice quality in terms of either having a lot of clothes in their wardrobe, or really trying to save money. The fact is that if you buy poor-quality clothes, you lose out in a couple of different ways because they do not last, you will end up replacing them in 6 months- a year, and they just really do not reflect well on you.
What is a virtual closet?
It is a specific software program that allows me to take pictures of my client’s wardrobe. Then, I’m able to upload all of their clothes in the closet. When I say virtual closet, it is just a digital version of their closet; they can look at it online with a specific link. They can see all of their clothes in separate pictures.
If they have an event, like a wedding, I can tell them what to wear to the wedding. Or, I can tell them what to bring to a conference in Florida so they do not over-pack and what to wear there.
As time moves on, and they want to add to their wardrobe, I can make recommendations from online websites. I can give different examples of different price points. The advantage of being registered for the closet is that you can click on the picture of the one you want and then you can buy it right there.
Who do you most commonly work with?
The most common client I have right now is a man or woman in their 40s or 50s in business who does not have time, has a very varied life, who does not want to spend their Saturday at the mall all of the time. They hire me to come in and create a wardrobe for them that they are comfortable with, that is flattering, that is in their budget, and it is easy to wear.
What types of help would someone graduating from college in terms of building their personal brand?
When you graduate college, presumably, you are looking for a job and you are just getting in your career. I help people in their 20s define a certain style for themselves and learn how to proceed going forward with their wardrobe.
In addition to the wardrobe, there are different etiquette situations that they may find themselves in, whether they are interviewing, trying to get clients, or just speaking. I help them through all of the nonverbal communication aspects of business etiquette.
What goes into dining etiquette?
A lot of second interviews are conducted over a meal. Specifically, employers are looking to see: is this someone that I could introduce to clients or pull into a meeting spontaneously?
I will go into a school and talk about the place setting, the use of silverware, nonverbal communication to communicate with the waitstaff. I talk to the students about that and not only does it help them make a good impression on potential employers, but it also helps them if and when they do find themselves in that situation.
Do you help people as well with interview skills?
I do help with interview skills. I also help them decide what to wear to an interview, especially if it is business casual. I talk about:
- How to greet someone
- Have eye contact
- Engage in conversation
In terms of dress:
- Start at the assumption that you will wear a suit (for a man) and a jacket (for a woman). You have to be 100% sure the company is casual before you do not wear a jacket on an interview.
- Sometimes, they give you guidance on what to wear, so you can believe that. But, maybe dress a touch nicer than what they direct you to.
- Do not be concerned if you are more professionally dressed than the person that you are speaking with. You are the one who has to make the good first impression.
Sharon, thank you for being on the show. How best can people reach out to you?
The name of my company is Image Design Consulting. My website is imagedesignconsulting.com. You can give me a call at (973)433-7142. You can email me: [email protected]. I am also on all of the social media: Instagram, Twitter, Facebook Business, and Yelp.
Thank you for listening, everyone. This is Marc Bautis. Have a great day.