Soul food

Is Looking Good Good Business

We have all heard and perhaps even used the common phrase;”looking good is good business”but is it really?

In 1994, an economist by the name Daniel Hamermesh from the University of Texas, carried out a research that led to the establishment of a concept he called Pulchrinomics which basically is the economic study of beauty.

Hamermesh and his colleagues carried out a study on the income of several thousands of workers in the United States and Canada and these were their findings:

  1. i)Workers who were considered as being more attractive than average earned five per cent over those of average attractiveness.
  2. ii)Those whose attractiveness were considered average earned about ten per cent more than those who were judged as being less attractive than average.

It was also discovered the most attractive workers generally pursued careers in professions that capitalized on their looks.

In another research carried out in Italy, ten thousand resumes were sent out to employers with the only difference being changes in the first name, last name, address and picture of the applicant to test a few biases including the effect of the candidate’s attractiveness on the feedback from the employers. The results were very insightful:

  1. i)The average call back ratio for all the candidates was 30%
  2. ii)The average call back ratio for attractive women in particular was 24% higher than the general call back ratio at 54%.

iii)            Men who were considered attractive had a 47% call back ratio.

  1. iv)Women who were considered unattractive had the worst call back ratio at 7% while unattractive men had a call back ratio of 26%.

Remember all the candidates had exactly the same qualifications.

Some other research conducted has shown that people tend to think that more attractive people thrive better in the workplace or in business. This may be as a result of the fact that attractive people tend to be more confident and outgoing which is a big advantage when it comes to important businessactivities such as pitching to clients, negotiating, and networking.

How does this relate to you as an entrepreneur? Research has also shown that when you meet a person for the first time (perhaps a potential client/customer), your appearance and body language makes up 55% of their first impression! Therefore, your ability to get a second meeting or close the deal is riding on how you look the first time.

It is important as an entrepreneur to ensure that you look your best all the time. Here are five quick tips to help you ensure you always have your best foot forward:

1)     Always look tidy and well-groomed as you never know who you would run into or what opportunities may arise in the course of the day.

2)     Reserve specific outfits for special meetings/outings so they are always in pristine condition and available when you need them.

3)     Pay attention to the little details. Chipped nails, dusty shoes, stained shirts, lost buttons and the likes may seem like minor details, but they can be very distracting to your audience.

4)     Be conscious of the non-verbal signals you send. For instance, do not slouch in your seat, if you are a lady wearing and you are wearing a skirt or dress be conscious of how you seat, get off rid of distracting and unprofessional habits like chewing your pen, biting your nails or playing with your hair/beard while speaking.

5)     Always look the part. If you are selling a premium or luxury service, make sure you look the part. If you are a marketing or branding person make sure your outfit is well coordinated. You must look like the result you are trying to sell, remember you are the biggest ambassador of your brand.

Quick Tip: Use your most flatteringdecent picture for your LinkedIn, Facebook, Whatsappand other social media platforms. These days most people google you before they meet you in person… and apparently looking good is good business!

 

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