Women tell me that wearing make up at work is a load of nonsense. Seven years ago I surveyed my database to discover what they thought of women who do wear make up and those who don’t. Overwhelmingly they said that women who don’t wear make up are lazy or gay. If you wear too much, caked on, then you are trying too hard. I’d like to think that this attitude has changed. Last week I posted the same question on Facebook. The post went viral. Women got very engaged and had a whole heap to say about it. One woman used make up to cover up her depression last year. It worked for her. Another loves how a little make up makes her feel. And yet another refuses to wear any make up for any occasion. There is no right or wrong here. What angered them was the expectation that they ‘should’ wear it. What I know for sure is that consistency with your brand is crucial. It communicates trust and reliability for your clients. 2016 research, from the University of Chicago and the University of California, has made the link between income level and grooming habits such as wearing make-up, styling hair and choice of clothing. It’s the first study to show that the “beauty premium can be actively cultivated”, and it examined nation-wide data of more than 14,000 participants. The “beauty premium” refers to the way physical attractiveness can increase income; a phenomena that has been shown in research time and time again. This study confirms the existence of the beauty premium, but says grooming also plays a part. In fact, salary differences between women of varying levels of attractiveness can be put down (almost always) to grooming habits. “We find that attractive individuals earn roughly 20 percent more than people of average attractiveness, but this gap is reduced when controlling for grooming, suggesting that the beauty premium can be actively cultivated,” the report states. I remain annoyed by the fact that as human beings we DO judge a book by its cover. I want to believe that misogyny and sexism in Australia does not exist, but it does. However, I am heartened by the research around grooming applying to both men and women. The corporate world is a sucker for a good looking employee. Fact. So, attractiveness matters. It’s proven by research. For over a decade now, I have been in the styling and personal branding business. I have styled clients in a way to serve them as individuals for their corporate roles and business and I have seen them promoted and earning more money. Their confidence increases. They achieve more. First impressions are crucial. Old research suggested that in the first seven seconds an impression is formed. I say it’s in the blink of an eye. Malcolm Gladwell writes about this in Blink. I don’t need seven seconds. So is it about make up or is it about good grooming? Let’s get back to your brand. What are your values? What do you stand for? What are you selling? We all sell something. Everyone is in sales. Do you look like the fee you charge? For both men and women there is no compromise around good grooming. Four elements for you to consider: Clothing - Clean and in good condition. Hair - Well groomed in a style that serves you. If you choose to colour your hair, attention to regrowth is not negotiable. You can have a hairline part colour done to save money. Alternative is to leave it natural. Going grey is cool by the way. A good hair stylist will help with this. Skin - Often overlooked. A simple daily regime of caring for your skin will make a difference. Despite what the skin care gurus tell you, there is no need to spend heaps on it. Accessories - Shoes, mobile phone, hand bag and jewellery in good condition. What I know for sure is that we do business with people we like and trust and consistency plays a role here. Being consistent with what YOU say your brand is. Personal Branding Board Room event for emerging female leaders in Collins Street, Melbourne 25 January 2017. If you are not being taken seriously, starved of feedback, inexperienced in leadership and have some doubt about your personal brand, this full day event is for you. Our team of experts will address leadership behaviours, linked in profile, branding headshot, styling and voice. Contact Helen 0409 324 248 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Ever done the same thing over and over again and wondered why you didn't get a different result from last time? Yeah, me too. Only this time, I've consistently done the same thing over and over for a whole month. Repetitive, boring, over and over and I'm getting results. I've discovered a pattern with me. I get bored doing the same thing over and over. I want change. I want the excitement of something different. I turned 50 this year and decided I would arrive fit and healthy for my 50th birthday. I hired a personal trainer and got strong. I have a healthy physical regime of spin classes, pilates and weights 6 days a week. Nailed it! The consistency of showing up every morning at the gym for 30-60 minutes a day was reaping results. I didn't realise it was working until I discovered my weights were increasing, the dial on the spin bike was up over 50 and I was consistently holding a plank for over 2 minutes when I could not even manage 30 seconds. I'm stoked. Now I've always worked out at the gym, participated in fun runs, commando training programs. I've always been active. And I've always eaten too much. I've consistently been 5-8 kilos overweight. I eat well. I'm a vegetarian, currently eating fish for the past 3 months. I just eat more than I need. I got educated on how to be a healthy vegetarian at Raw Satya in Windsor in Melbourne with Rosemarie Walmsley. Best thing ever. My blood tests each year are awesome. My GP can't believe how good my results are, year after year. So I came to the decision that the layer of fat covering my strong muscular body had to go. I did some research and commenced a 30 day nutritional cleanse. I took every item of clothing out of my wardrobe that was too small and put it on display. My bedroom had stuff everywhere! I consistently followed the program, did my bit of exercise, increased my water intake and hey presto ..... 4 kilos lighter! My personal trainer commented on the muscle definition she can now see in my back. I have a heap of clothing that is now too big and needs altering. Everything that was too small, now fits. Well, if I can do that in 30 days, what might be possible in another 30 days? What I've learned is that consistency works. I decided I'm more committed to my health and wellbeing, than I am to a glass of red wine or a packet of chocolate bullets (both treats I really, really love!). So, today marks the commencement of another 30 day nutritional cleanse. I'm committed to having the physical body that I really want - strong, fit and lean. I'll focus on what I want and consistently do what it is I need to do, one day at a time. No more, no less. I'm not bored with consistency. I'm bloody excited by it! Where could you use consistency to make an impact in your life?