Virtually Attired: 7 Tips to Dress for Cyberspace Success

First impressions are critical in the world of business. According to New York Image consultants, what you wear is just as important as your smile. Projecting confidence can improve your opportunities for success in business, as well as personal life. 

Here’s the thing, participating in a virtual event doesn’t mean that your appearance can take a back seat. I know what you’re thinking, “Office-casual attire is accepted in most corporate environments nowadays. Plus, working from home is fast becoming the norm, why would you put so much stock in business attire?” 

While you could get away with working from home in your PJs or attending an event in laid-back, casual clothes, you won’t be doing yourself any favors. Think about it. Working in your comfy home clothes puts you at a disadvantage even if you aren’t on video during a virtual event. 

You’ll find it harder to get yourself into a professional mindset, negatively affecting your productivity levels. In short, how you dress impacts your thoughts and actions. With this in mind, you should consider the value of business attire. 

Fascinating stuff, right? The CBS Interactive business network has a savvy video about dressing for business that you should definitely check out. 

In short, your appearance is crucial when attending a virtual event, regardless of whether your colleagues can see you. Consider these seven handy tips to ensure you come across professionally and feel good about it. 

  1. Prioritize the upper half of your body since your head and shoulders will be in focus during a webcam meeting or event.
  2. Don’t overlook your background. Go for a neutral, neat and tidy backdrop. Avoid busy locations that will pull focus away from you. 
  3. Dress professionally. Appropriate business attire sets a business-like mood for the meeting, allowing you to think and act professionally. 
  4. Don’t overlook your grooming. Ensure that your teeth are brushed and your hair is styled. For men, shaving or styling your facial hair will significantly improve your appearance. Women who usually use makeup could apply foundation powder to get rid of shiny spots. 
  5. Your posture speaks volumes. Sitting up straight conveys to your colleagues that you’re focused and attentive. Moreover, good posture works wonders for your energy levels. 
  6. Go for a neutral shirt or top. Avoid bright and detailed clothing with loud designs. Such attire only serves to distract your audience and pull their focus away from your message. 
  7. If you must wear jewelry, go for subtle pieces. Avoid flashy jewelry like chunky necklaces and dangling earrings; they’ll only serve as a source of distraction. 

Remember, “understated works best.” The secret behind impactful professional attire is working with less to produce a “Wow” effect. That said, while you focus on the upper part of your body, don’t totally neglect your lower half as well. 

Set yourself up for virtual event success by implementing these handy tips.