Labor Day is coming and it’s back to school for millions of school children. But this national holiday also signals the unofficial end of summer, when companies shift into high gear to meet their revenue targets for the year.
Many people get the blues but you can avoid the post-summer slump by getting yourself ready for a busy fall season.
What does getting ready entail?
First, start thinking about how you’re presenting yourself in every aspect of your life. Begin setting your business goals for the fourth quarter. Make sure your wardrobe is updated so that you project a professional image.
You’re Presenting Every Day
In every part of your daily life you’re presenting — not just when speaking at a meeting. You’re presenting when you’re talking to your boss or ordering in a restaurant. So you want to be at your best.
Just think about all the times you’re “on stage” with the chance to make a positive or negative impression: networking at a business event, delivering a proposal, making a toast, giving a classroom lecture, explaining something, giving directions, or applying for a loan at the bank. We use public speaking in every part of our daily lives.
Remember the successes you’ve had in those situations. Draw on the skills that helped you succeed and you’ll continue to improve and gain in self-confidence.
Set Your Goals
Typically, the budget process in most companies starts after Labor Day. Think about new projects you want to recommend for next year. Take the time now to do the necessary research and formulate a plan to present to your manager.
Remember to structure your presentation with an introduction, two-to-three key messages with supporting evidence, and a compelling summary to convince him that your idea is worthy of a place in the budget.
While other people are vacationing, use the time to brush up on your presentation skills working with a coach, if possible, to prepare for the situations when you’ll be presenting.
Before you begin to speak in any setting, people form a first an impression by what you wear. Your personal style is a silent introduction of yourself to others.
Start by going through your closet and donating the clothes you haven’t worn for years to your favorite thrift shop. Maybe you don’t wear them because they no longer fit or they seem dated. You know you’ll never wear them again. Get rid of them.
Put away your sandals and shorts and go back to closed shoes and more formal business attire if you work for a conservative company. Even if the dress code is business casual where you work, you’ll stand out from the crowd with your clean, pressed slacks or skirts and a stylish selection of shirts or blouses.
Make sure there are no stains on the clothes you move from the back of the closet to the front for the new season. Casual doesn’t mean sloppy
I remember a morning when I was running late and dressed quickly. When I got to the client’s office and looked in the mirror, I saw a big coffee stain on my white sweater. Luckily, I was able to put the sweater on backwards and go through my day with confidence. But had I checked my sweater when I redid my closet, I could have avoided the tension of this situation.
Tips for Dressing for Success
Most of us are on a budget and not prepared to spend a bundle on a new wardrobe.
If you’d like to wear designer clothes but can’t afford to, check out consignments shops in your neighborhood or shop online. USA Today published a story in its business section last week about The RealReal, an online shopping outlet for pre-owned designer goods, where the price for a designer dress might be less than half the original cost.
An About.com article provides tips for a how a woman can achieve a polished, professional look for her wardrobe. Modern Gentlemen Magazine offers tips in this article on building an essential men’s wardrobe.
Are you geared up and ready to change your mindset after Labor Day? It’s right around the corner. Get a jump on the competition with a fresh approach to your job and yourself.