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The suit is dead. Long live the suit

September 12, 2020

Has Covid-19 wiped out the suit?

Even if we’re shirted from the waist up while on our Zoom calls, we’re more than likely to be stretchy panted down below.

But… those poor suits.

I’m a little sad for them.

[Insert Love Theme from Romeo and Juliette]

The jackets, the ties, the galaxy dresses, all hung up at the back of the wardrobe with nowhere to go. A relic from a bygone age: now added to the dusty pile of fax machines, filofaxes and Newtons Cradles.

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But it’s not surprising. Working from the kitchen table in bowler hat and tie would be incredibly uncomfortable (not to mention weird).

And of course, much of the business world has been bombing round in hoodies and trainers for years. Take those creative types – not a collar in sight. Or those IT dudes.

But is total relaxation what clients expect from professional services people? It’s slightly different I think. Not that I’m advocating the full frock coat look, but a smelly t-shirt might be a step too far. Because a) finance advice is a hight ticket item, b) clients rate the professional aspect of it highly and h) in this digital-first world, you’re under more scrutiny than ever.

Sometimes I think we can forget some clients take comfort in a more formal look, because it’s still what they equate with being ‘professional’. Being all backward cap cool can feel a little try hard sometimes – and even slightly patronising. A bit like when Kate Middleton insists on wearing sale items from Zara. Give it up Kate, you’re going to be Queen one day, stop pretending you’re one of us!

All I’m saying is that it’s worth thinking about because you’re now more of a walking billboard than ever. Without the office, the receptionist, the room fragrance, the posh coffee, the comfy chairs, you’re all your clients has to go on. So it better be right!

September 12, 2020

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