Business Etiquette Series – Personal Grooming

PERSONAL GROOMING – Do not let yourself be an empty suit.

Business etiquette requires attention to a few timeless rules of appearance and grooming. It requires you to dress unselfishly, for others as well as yourself.


Your wardrobe speaks

Dress is nonverbal communication. It says a great deal about you and your attitude toward the world around you. Be sure your business clothes are appropriate to what you do, impeccably clean and well maintained.


Look around your place of business. Identify people with clout in your Organization. Observe how they dress. Do not imitate, but do emulate. Take the cue from these people.

  • Dress for others

At home, you dress for yourself. In business, you compromise between what makes you comfortable and what makes others comfortable.

  • Shine your shoes

Clothing experts agree; the first article of clothing most people notice, on men or women, are shoes. Keep them in top shape, shined and well maintained.

  • Your business outfit
  • It should say something of about you, not about itself. ‘’Less is more’’ should be your guide.
  • Do not wear gaudy shirts, blouses or ties.
  • Avoid excessive jewelry, especially elaborately dangling earrings and noisy bracelets. Anklets are definitely out.
  • Avoid excessive makeup, and overly long fingernails.
  • Do not overpower the office with your perfume, cologne or after shave. A little goes a long way.
  • Avoid revealing clothes to the office.
  • Invest in good quality accessories – watch, tie, shoes, belt, purse, laptop bag, and briefcase.


Key learning point: Styles change, fashions are fickle and there are really no magic formulas, but Business Etiquette requires attention to a few timeless rules of appearance and grooming. However, do not let yourself become an empty suit.

Poorly dressed man