The Hoodie

Another old post. How do you think someone should dress in today’s professional world? 

With Facebook’s IPO set to go live on May 18, the company’s founder and CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, is spending a lot of time traveling with hopes of winning over new and potential investors. When Zuckerberg wore a hoodie during a recent pitch, the suit-wearing audience was less than pleased, remarking that his unprofessional attire was a sign of immaturity. And this wasn’t his only recent hooded appearance.

How to Dress for the Job You Want

I had a conversation with my granddad recently about how the professional world is changing. He finds it hard to believe that I don’t wear a suit to the office, even if doing so would single me out just as much as someone wearing jeans to the office in his day. The truth is, being a professional no longer means being well dressed.

Zuckerberg’s hoodie is a great example of this. Should investors be upset that Facebook’s CEO doesn’t dress like they do? I don’t think so.

I say this as a personal advocate for dressing well. It seems to be a lost art, especially among men my age. When done intently, the way you dress sends a very specific message about who you are, where you stand, and what you want. It’s a boast of confidence, a first impression, a way to set the tone to any conversation. Basically, it’s really important.

Granted, Zuckerberg has proven himself a capable business person. Maybe the clothes don’t make the man, but I do believe there is something to be said for respect. Facebook was started to automate the college social experience, but that doesn’t mean that Zuckerberg is still a college student. While I respect his work, accomplishments and general rebelliousness, I think it might be time for Facebook’s founder to start dressing like a grown-up.

 David Pemberton, Editor, Social Media + PR, AREA203 Digital; follow… @Dave_Your_Fave

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