There is a saying that You Shall Be Addressed The Way You Are Dressed. and a book with the title Executive Presence.
Dress well, speak well, carry yourself with panache, and half your life battles are won.
In the book, it is said that most people judge you (subliminally) by their perception of you. While reputation is what people think you are and character is who you are, it would appear that your reputation or how you are perceived is more important than reality for most humans.
It’s a Reputation Economy, all right.
The Reputation Economy Is An Environment Where Brands Are Built Based On How They Are Perceived Online And The Promise They Deliver Offline. It’s A Marketplace Where Professionals Are Treated Like Products, And Are Rated, Commented On, And Judged Based On Reputation
There was the recent story of some female broadcasters suspended from work on account of being too fat
Have a look at :
Thought it is said that You Should Not/ Can Not Judge A Book By Its Cover?
The issue of perception was graphically demonstrated to me some time ago when a professional colleague and I went to a high value company in a late model Hyundai Elantra saloon car.
It was a first time visit there, in that particular car. The security guards at the company did not open the gate for us to drive in, insisting that visitors are mandated to park outside. Being Victoria Island, that would constitute a “problem” as we were a bit late for our appointment.
This issue of perception was forcefully brought home to me when I remembered that these same guards opened the gates wide, without questions, just two weeks earlier, because we came in a far more upscale vehicle (a Range Rover Sports HSE).
This story of the suspended broadcasters reminded me of the time when a colleague was complaining that someone who came for an interview was unkempt (not shaved), and that biased my colleague negatively against the man, ab initio.
I was telling him that the man was being interviewed for a techie post, so he should concentrate more on his technical ability, rather than focus on his looks. Ironically this man who ordinarily would have been nullified for his looks alone, performed wonderfully well in the interview, and subsequently, on the job!
Should looks matter that much? Those women broadcasters suspended it is possible some of them added weight after becoming mothers. Should someone lose her job on account of something that may not be in her control (some people are genetically predisposed to being fat at certain periods of their life)?
So, how much premium should we place on appearances.. over the things we have “upstairs”.. your competence for the job in question?
Must that chap being interviewed for that managerial job have an edge just because he is better built / better dressed than his contemporaries, even if he is less competent?
Yes, it is said that You Never Get A Second Chance To Make A Positive First Impression.
Perhaps we should always give people second chances no matter the physical first impression?
Perhaps I was deluded when I said The Robe Does Not Make The Monk?