Imagine a friend has just attended the first night of a play (we may, one day, get to do so again). The main character is played by a huge movie star. You ask your friend about their performance, and the answer is ‘He/she was wearing the most brilliant…’
What has this to do with our topic here? Simply that the objective in dressing for such an event is to not make this the key subject for later conversations! What you said and how you said it should be the standout points. If we return to the theater for a moment, how you dress is the strong supporting role. Here are some areas to help in achieving this.
Fully Understand The Dress Code For The Event
Ask your contact to give you a quick description of what the attendees and key participants will be wearing at the conference. A simple term like ‘smart casual’ doesn’t really give much detail. It’s also quite possible the speakers are expected to dress more formally than the audience in attendance at the conference. Check, too, for any other parts of the event that you will be attending, such as a formal or awards dinner.
Find Out About The Location
This is a point that many speakers at a conference might well neglect to consider. The way the venue is set up, the color scheme and chosen theme, can suggest a choice of outfit. You will need to stand out from the background, which may often be quite dark. Equally, it might be possible to give a passing hint to an organization or company’s logo colors in at least an accessory to your outfit.
Pack A Back-Up
This might be an alternative to your original choice, just in case the dress code isn’t as expected. Equally, accidents happen, so having a fall-back outfit for convenience is equally important!
Aim To Be Better Dressed Than Your Audience
This advice is to be treated carefully so that it doesn’t reach the realms of seeming to show off wealth, status, etc. But it does give the impression that you appreciate the invitation and the importance of the event. This can also be worth remembering in terms of accessories such as watches, bracelets, and the like.
Okay, this is a given; but clothes that look as if they are severely in need of pressing can suggest a lack of preparation or interest in the occasion. It’s also important to mention the delicate subject of sweat. If you do perspire at such events, choose a light color to hide this during the conference. Alternatives are a fabric that doesn’t stain or to add an extra layer of protective clothing to deal with the problem.
Clothes That You Feel Good Wearing
The outward impression, as mentioned earlier, is of vital importance. But the same can be said of choosing clothes that provide you with an extra level of self-confidence. These also highlight the outward impression of your inner confidence. This is equally important with your choice of dependable footwear for the conference.
A final theater reference – whether at home or at the location, try a proper dress rehearsal. Make sure everything fits, looks good, and you are comfortable when wearing every item.