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Old 08-07-2013, 10:09 PM
Location: Brentwood, Tennessee
39,326 posts, read 37,940,573 times
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Originally Posted by Exhibit_B View Post
. i rarely see my boss though as i work from home mostly or i'm in meetings at client sites or traveling. because of the nature of DC, there's lots of activity after hours at the bars and happy hours. it would mostly be a suit and tie when at client sites doing IT consulting work.
Well, this makes sense. If you are off site and meeting with clients, you certainly should wear a suit.

I thought you were in an office.
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Old 08-07-2013, 11:01 PM
Location: Austin, TX
1,352 posts, read 1,216,638 times
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Yeah, suit and tie seems like appropriate wear when meeting with clients offsite. I don't see any harm in that. You want to give the clients a good first impression. Go for it, OP.

(The rest of this post doesn't seem to apply to you, OP, but I'll mention it anyway...)

If you were in an office OTOH where the dress code is one or two steps below suit/tie and I was a supervisor, I would frown on you wearing a suit and tie (while everyone else was dressing more business casual) in the office and may talk to you about it during your performance review. I wouldn't want other colleagues to feel "shown up" and would prefer you dress down a bit. Looking professional and well put-together is great and all, but overdoing it may not sit well with others on the team and they may quietly feel resentful and suspect that you're overly brown-nosing in a lame attempt to "impress" your boss or the executives.

Generally speaking, in business and social/informal situations it is unwise to overdress and come across as a try-hard. One step above the norm is no big deal. However, many people are wary of those who dress too far beyond the expected norm, and some may even outright dislike such people. They may suspect you're trying to sell something, or they may feel you're being a bit condescending (which may rub some of them the wrong way), or they may feel that you like attention a bit too much. This is one area where it's a good idea to be somewhat conformist by dressing occasion-appropriate.
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Old 08-08-2013, 12:34 AM
Location: The Old Dominion
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Business suits are regular attire in Washington and New York.

However, IT is often an exception to the rule.

I wouldn't stray too far from what your peers are wearing.
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Old 08-08-2013, 01:05 AM
97 posts, read 224,415 times
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ZZ top said it best. There is something about a sharp dressed man.
(for those under 45, ZZ top was a very popular rock band in the seventies and eighties)
Gentlemen, now you really do take notice of us in a positive way when we wear nicer clothes in the workplace.
I'm not talking trashy low rent, skank attire, just nicer, more expensive tailored business suits that are both conservative and feminine. Dresses and suits that would look right at home on a CEO or a member of the board of directors.
There is no harm in dressing like the L'Oreal ad tagline goes, ..."Because You Are Worth It".
I bet you stay in shape and care about your health and physical appearance.
Certainly, you do because you want to remain healthy for your wife & kids. Your wife likes it too. Those of you that are not yet hitched, do so because your prospects of finding an attractive, smart spouse increase exponentially if you yourself are in better than average shape.
If you care about maximizing earning and career potential, given that every other performance criteria is equal, then the person that sports a memorable dashing, flawless, "sharp-dressed man" look is certainly going to make the most memorable impression with both male and female superiors.
That person will earn more faster than those who dress average.
Looks matter. It is simply human nature. Every magazine & tv ad shows this. Even a four year old child has learned this by that age.

Some folks, men in particular, are challenged when they must pick wardrobe staples that go together. You can tell by some clueless guys that wear colors that don't match well or go monocromatic and it makes them look like a "hitman" or a $12 an hour Radio Shack store employee. They don't know how to get jackets and trousers to fit them. They barely know how to tie a tie and get the tie to hand at the proper length. Trousers that have the pants leg too long looks extremely 'bush-league' and plain sad as if nobody taught them to dress properly. Guys choose khaki because it is one color trouser which is a staple of business casual. Khaki never looks upscale or dressy but it is one color which looks respectable in a cheaper quality cloth and cut of trouser.
Some men are really cheap when it comes to spending on their workplace wardrobe. They will buy expensive shorts, tee-shirts and other workout and recreational attire and then dress as if they were a teen-ager working at Best Buy or Target. This is really sad.

Go for it! Dress better. Sure, your drycleaning bill will increase exponentially.
You will turn more heads. Every woman will notice the difference. Your confidence will get even better.
Most of the men at the company will assume that you are more important and more knowledgeable even if they are in different departments or division leaders.
There is no downside to dressing for success, other than a higher cost of attire and dry cleaning.
You'll likely get noticed and promoted sooner and a larger paycheck.
Perception is reality in many cases. Look like a leader, even if you don't know everything. There is a good chance your superiors don't know that much... Decisions are ultimately made on the simplest of things. Make a good impression and you're off to a good start. The more people that you know and really think that "you're on the ball"will determine how fast you rise within a firm.
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Old 08-08-2013, 05:27 AM
273 posts, read 396,721 times
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Thank you, Linda. Very encouraging advice. I think I'm on the right path. In my field I advanced greatly being the guy with khaki's and the laptop bag in the corner coding all day, but now as I'm more senior in my career the stakes are higher and I'm ready for the next level of salary and title.
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Old 08-08-2013, 08:13 AM
1,696 posts, read 1,410,010 times
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Everyone seems to wear khakis and polos, even people working min. wage jobs. You can't tell the execs from the wage-slaves except by the logos. If you want to stand out, wearing a well-made suit at least sometimes will help. I wouldn't hold back because someone, somewhere may decide you are 'trying too hard'. The higher-ups who offer promotion prefer people who are trying too hard, who aren't just content to be one among the crowd. So many people think life is like high school and standing out or being outstanding is somehow bad.

You might start incrementally, however. Buy a higher quality (not nec. a more expensive) polo. Change out the khakis for darker trousers made in a higher quality material. A summer-weight wool, for instance. Another day, throw a blazer on over your polo shirt. That way when you come in wearing a suit and a dress shirt and a tie...it won't be such a shock to the others!

By wearing a suit, you may also find your love-life improving.

Of course, being in DC, everyone will assume you work on the Hill.
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Old 08-08-2013, 09:17 AM
11,775 posts, read 16,524,496 times
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We settled for the middle of the road. Very good sports coats with very good ties and old Hopi belt buckles (no stones). When DH came home from a business trip to DC he grinned and told me a very well put together older lady stopped him to say that it is a pleasure to see a man under dressed to the T.
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Old 08-08-2013, 10:04 AM
Location: "Daytonnati"
4,245 posts, read 5,764,994 times
Reputation: 2958
Yeah, suit and tie seems like appropriate wear when meeting with clients offsite. I don't see any harm in that. You want to give the clients a good first impression. Go for it, OP.

Yes, this makes sense. However, being the only guy in a suit/tie when the office norm is business casual, well, sort of odd.

I once worked with an ex-marine (and West Point grad) who had what he called his "duty jacket"...it was a blue blazer or tweed sport coat....that he used when he had to meet with higher ups or clients. Otherwise it was sort of the buisness causal look, dress shirt with rolled up shirtsleeves, but with a tie.
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Old 08-08-2013, 10:04 AM
Location: New York City
4,036 posts, read 8,670,337 times
Reputation: 3699
Menís fashion goes in waves and suits, or at least tailored clothing, are hot right now. Perhaps itís the influence of shows like Mad Men? If youíre going to do it I suggest getting a few good pieces that are slim and well-tailored. Avoid the generic and boxy Menís Warehouse-type sack suit. Theyíre unflattering to the body.

If you really want to look really sharp, dress seasonally. I was in the Des Moines recently and men were wearing tweed in July. They looked ridiculous. In New York and DC, men wear summer suits in the summer.
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Old 08-08-2013, 10:30 AM
Location: Back in the gym...Yo Adrian!
9,371 posts, read 17,525,037 times
Reputation: 18347
Whatever you wear, wear it with confidence. If you feel comfortable in a suit, go with that, you really can't go wrong. I prefer the suit with or w/o tie to the khakis and polo set-up. If you feel good dressing up then go for it.
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