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Old 11-07-2005   #1
randfish
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Question Dress Codes in SEO

In the SEO Business, what do you believe are the dress codes for:

1. Going in to the office?
2. Meeting with a new client?
3. Speaking at a conference/event?

I'll give my views and perhaps others can give theirs:

1. Jeans and t-shirt. I like to be comfortable and not make my employees feel that they need to dress up.

2. Always a suit - typically without a tie, although if it's in Europe or Asia (or your clients are from these regions) a tie is de rigour

3. A mix - you'll often see me at SES shows in Jeans with a sportcoat (and yellow shoes)

Anyone Else have Feelings on this?
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Old 11-07-2005   #2
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The west coast is different from the east coast. In the east they typically are more inclined to do the suit and tie thing whereas in the west it is more relaxed. This is one of the reason’s I am glad to be on the west coast.

Because we very rarely if ever have clients come to the office, I am usually in shorts and a t-shirt.

When meeting an existing client - dress jeans or casual slacks and polo or button down shirt but a potential client, dress slacks and shoes and button shirt without tie.

Speaking at conference again would depend on west coast or east. If east, probably the same way I'd dress for potential client meeting and west, the way I'd dress for existing client.

BTW, I'd never wear yellow shoes - that is a trademark that belongs to Rand and Rand alone, just like Mikkel's colorful suits.
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Old 11-07-2005   #3
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2. Anything that looks acceptable. I can't do a suit. I won't. I find that looking too formal hurts what I do and say, so I just wear trousers and a collared shirt.

I guess it depends upon your likely clients though. Some corporates have made the "smart casual" move, others have gone completely in the other direction. If you want to get the business of a suited corporate, go suited. If you are pitching a business with less pretence and a more results oriented culture, usually an agressive SME, they usually couldn't care less if you showed up nude with a Punk boa around your neck, as long as you get them results!

As with all good marketing, your external image is a ploy. If you wear a suit, you are compared to everyone else that walks in in a suit. If you walk in looking and sounding different, you have an edge. Kinda like when i went to Japan. As a White boy, you are a scarce resourse, and the women tend to be very.. apreciative

Looking different won't always work, but then nothing ever does. As long as the loses from your image are less than the gains, whatever works best works best

I would also add:
4. Post sale meetings. Personally I find that, as SEO involves tech people, if you walk into a meeting with tech dudes all suited up, looking like the proto-typical consultant, tech people instantly have an allergic reaction, and ignore whatever you say. I call this "suit-o-phobia" or, when I what to be truly pretentious, praecepio-anti-authoritarian-imago (I just made that up BTW. How good is the web? Latin translators at my finger tip!). In such cases, dressing down, and looking uncomfortable even at that level of dress, puts you right on the level of the tech dudes, they warm to you and are more likely to listen and consider what you say.

My $0.02.
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Old 11-08-2005   #4
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I like your comments, Michael. I think one of the reasons I feel the need to dress more formally is my age. I've always had to cover for my youth (as I've been in business since I was 19) and a good suit can go a long way.
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Old 11-08-2005   #5
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Well, I don't offer SEO services. But I do offer Web services and I never wear a suit. I dress with nice pants and nice button down shirt every day - that is what I wear to meetings, conferences and work (1, 2, and 3).

We are all high tech geeks here and that is what I am trying to portray. Suits don't give that impression, IMO.

East coast here. Have meetings in NYC way too often. One tomorrow, ill let you know what they are wearing. But I rarely meet with the suit type, unless its a law firm or the like. Major corporations dont even do the suit thing anymore, typically.
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Old 11-08-2005   #6
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my own dress code.

1. Going in to the office?
Jeans and polo shirt, or some SEO type of t shirt I got at a conference....unless we're expecting someone (rare) in which case, I'll dress in my company polo shirt and jeans.

2. Meeting with a new client?
Depends on client...if in doubt, I'll ask them. Nothing worse than showing up all decked out and having them in shorts and t shirts (happened to me once).

3. Speaking at a conference/event?
Professional, yet casual. I just have a feeling I'd learn more from some one in jeans as opposed to someone in a suit...just my thoughts.
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Old 11-08-2005   #7
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Kaki's and a button up.

I like to dress relaxed where ever I go. Usually jeans, kaki's, or some nice cords, with usually some sort of paintball industry pit shirt (The sport is a huge part of me, so I try to rep it as much as possible.)

Client meetings, depends on the client. I'd never wear business attire to Oakley, I just wouldn't feel comfortable. But I'd never wear a tee shirt to Mitsubishi.

Our office attire is typically "Just make sure it's clean, and if it has holes, make sure it's supposed to have holes", unless a potentail client is visiting, then its business casual.
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Old 11-08-2005   #8
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Most days I consider it a success if I get dressed by 3pm.

otherwise, my clients expect me to show up in fleece, ski/snowboard boots, hiking or biking gear.

so you can see why I take the opportunities of conferences to dress up a little

there's a good article I just read on Yahoo about the next/current generation of the work force Generation Y: They've arrived at work with a new attitude

it's only slightly about clothing/dress codes, more about approach in general.
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Old 11-08-2005   #9
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Old 11-08-2005   #10
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If I'm meeting with a new client or potential (which isn't often) I might wear a suit. If I've met them before, I will probably just wear slacks. If I'm doing in house consulting, I'll probably wear a suit, at least for the first day (if it's more than one day). Same when I do my seminars. Suit the first day (because I'm the host) and then a bit more casual the next day.

Most days I work at home and have Elis. beat as I sometimes don't get dressed until 6 or 7 or sometimes not at all.
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Old 11-08-2005   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jill Whalen

Most days I work at home and have Elis. beat as I sometimes don't get dressed until 6 or 7 or sometimes not at all.
i have those days too today is looking like one of them. LOL.
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Old 11-08-2005   #12
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"sometimes not at all"

oh Jill!
Quote:
sometimes not at all
Should start a new slogan
"SEO Naked"
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Old 11-08-2005   #13
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Quote:
you'll often see me at SES shows in Jeans with a sportcoat (and yellow shoes)
Here in Texas we all wear heavily starched jeans, cowboy boots, and 10 gallon cowboy hats. All the time.
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Old 11-08-2005   #14
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Quote:
... and 10 gallon cowboy hats
Let me guess, they only come in two colours

Quote:
I sometimes don't get dressed until 6 or 7 or sometimes not at all
Praise summer! After months of having to wear hot, heavy clothes, with the Southern Summer upon us, I have the joy of going back to just shorts.
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Old 11-08-2005   #15
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1. Going in to the office?

Shorts or jeans & tshirts or untucked comfortable shirts

2. Meeting with a new client?

Khakis and collared shirt till we break them into our culture.

3. Speaking at a conference/event?

Khakis and a collared shirt.

Bill may wear starched jeans and boots, but when its 90 degrees at 10 o'clock at night Ill wear my shorts thank you.
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Old 11-09-2005   #16
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1. Going to the Office: Well, I work at home so it's whatever I happen to have on at the moment, which ranges from nothing to full power suit and everything in between. Usually sweat pants and a t-shirt.

2. Meeting a client for the first time. Business formal. Proper pinstriped suit.

3. Subsequent meetings - equal to or one step better than the clients. Usually equal to, unless they are slobs.

4. Speaking at events. Business formal unless it's clear the other presenters are ALL casual. Equal to or one better than the norm (or host, whichever is more formal)

Basically, I feel first impressions count. I'd rather the flashback in a clients eyes be towards someone in a power suit and reminds them of their boss than someone who looks like the people they order around all day and underpay...

Ian
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Old 11-09-2005   #17
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1. Going in to the office?

What ever is comfortable. T-shirt and shorts on a hot summer day. Slippers, fleece pants and long-sleves in the winter.

2. Meeting with a new client?

Always a suit, but what's equaly important is to have a high quality business card. It doesn't matter how you dress if you don't have a subtle and dignified business card.

3. Speaking at a event?

A suit. The idea is to try to dress a little better than the audience, if the audience is very informal (e.g. T-shirts and jeans) then lose the tie, take off your jacket and roll up the sleaves.

Last edited by Sorvoja : 11-09-2005 at 03:50 AM.
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Old 11-11-2005   #18
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Old 11-11-2005   #19
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Should start a new slogan
"SEO Naked"
Ahem... That is openly Naked
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Old 11-11-2005   #20
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I didn't like to say it but I've been talking to my biggest client naked before -

The perils of the SOHO

If I visit a client (first time) smart casual Nordstrom then it's WYSIWYG all downhill....

I can't work with people around anyway as it's too distracting with everyone yakking.

Who's first to start a SEO/SEM Nudist Camp????

David
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Last edited by David Wallace : 11-11-2005 at 12:06 PM.
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