Are jeans appropriate for work?

Not if you want people to take you seriously, this PR pro says. If you want to be successful, you have to dress the part.

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I get that jeans have become the social media uniform. But I don’t get why so many popular public speakers think it’s OK to wear jeans when they are on stage, particularly if they look like they just rolled out of bed.

In our industry, everyone complains about how we still don’t have a seat at the boardroom table. Yet, we think it’s OK to wear jeans as our professional dress. If you want to sit at the table in the greater business conversation, you have to look like you belong there.

Jeans are not suitable for professional speakers, social media nerds, or in any professional meeting.

Many years ago, Gary Kisner—he ran Fleishman-Hillard‘s Kansas City office—told me you have to look the part if you want people to take you seriously. He used this lesson when he told me to stop biting my fingernails.

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