Yesterday we were treated to the first of many appearances of the potential next Prime Minister's wife, both Gordon Brown and David Cameron choosing to be accompanied.
As the date of the election had been anticipated by the press, both Samantha and Sarah must have given some thought to what they would be wearing for the announcement yesterday. Sarah decided on a very relaxed casual look and Samantha chose a jacket. What messages were they hoping to convey?Both their husbands were suited! Which look most conveyed the wife of a leader?
Most will answer the jacket - many will expect figures, such as these, in authority to be dressed smartly. But perhaps the cardigan showed friendliness some might say.
I was thinking of this as I watched the TV programme about the cardiac team at Gt Ormond Street hospital and the excellent work they are doing with very sick children. The Doctors knew each day that they would be spending a large part of their time in theatre wearing scrubs. However, when talking to parents of their patients they were dressed formally and were very smart. I just wonder if they arrived in jeans and a jumper/cardigan to talk to these parents would they have instantly got the respect they so rightly deserved?
We can all take messages from this. Dressing for the occasion and for the impression you wish to give is so important. How you look speaks for you, before you open your mouth.
Do look at my website if you'd like to read more about this and how I can help you to get it right.