Expertise, Specialities, Competencies ...
Rashna's bespoke workshop on business etiquette covers most of the everyday situations of office life. It suggests a code of manners, which helps to regulate how people behave in an office setting.
It is not just about standing up when certain people enter the room, or who should sit first when a group goes into a meeting. It’s about how to behave with clients on the phone - including rude ones - how to communicate and what to communicate, how to introduce clients to colleagues, how to give and take criticism, when and how to organize a business lunch or dinner, how to deal with office colleagues and what to wear. She makes sure that whatever the occasion, we perform in such a way that our endeavors are crowned with success, however modest or ambitious they are. And we are most likely to perform to the best of our ability if we have some good idea of what is expected of us and by whom and why.
The business world has become horrendously competitive. Old loyalties have been trampled over. All is fair in business, and customers shop around. We cannot risk turning away a potential client by sloppy telephone manners or presentation. We must get the best out of every one of the staff. We have to promote good practice.
In an increasingly dynamic and ever evolving commercial world, men and women who can show knowledge of the ethics of business and have the ability to put that knowledge into good practice will have that crucial edge over their rivals.
Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you thought you'd be taken seriously, but weren't?
Like during a business meeting, in the classroom, at a community event, or in some other setting in which you were playing a prominent role? You went in thinking you'd make an impact, but then received either a tepid reception or were outright ignored. When all was said and done, you were left scratching your head, wondering what went wrong.
If so, you're not alone. I've seen men and woman both step in front of a group of people to teach, preach, demonstrate, or debate, only to be overlooked or dismissed. And almost every time, it was because of what they were wearing.
Or rather, what they weren't wearing: authority pieces.
Authority pieces are clothing items that establish credibility and point to your aptitude and include key elements like collars, sleeves, and jackets in firm fabrics and neutral colors. Authority pieces lend substance, then instantly fade into the background to allow your audience to focus on your words or abilities. With them, you're viewed as competent enough to command attention; without them, you're not. In fact, you may even be ridiculed or overlooked, depending on the situation.
So what does it take to dress well? A lot of money? A perfect figure? An enormous closet? Nope.
Dressing well is a lot like cooking well or painting well or playing the piano well: once you learn the basics and apply them repeatedly, you become proficient. Like a botched sauce or a missed chord, you begin to recognize your clothing missteps and in time, you stop making them. All it takes is a little practice.
But as I look around at people on the streets and see how they present themselves, it's apparent that many have never learned the basics. They may know that they're supposed to wear certain types of clothes to certain functions, but they're missing the main ingredient: how to dress for success.
In a world where everyone is different, one size does NOT fit all. Thus, learning how to dress yourself becomes the essential ingredient in dressing well.