Sunday, October 28, 2007

What Not to Wear

Back in my Federal Days, my team received the opportunity to work on a project with the Executive Office of the President of the United States.

Damn near wet myself when it got setup.

After our inside team gave us the details, I called the project lead at the EOPOTUS and made introductions, confirmed the major details of their evaluation, and walked through the needs analysis. At the conclusion of this exercise we scheduled an on site meeting and presentation.

About a week before our meeting, I received an email from the lead asking that we make sure that our people dressed appropriately.

Initially, I thought the guy was slamming me on being from the deep south and somehow had formed a mental image of me and my team showing up with Appalachian-grade dental work, coveralls, and "We Love Willie Nelson" T-Shirts.

When I called him to clarify, the lead explained that sadly, it was simply a fact that they regularly had a series of outside vendors that did not dress appropriately for the dignity of their office.

Let me set this down for you, this is the President's Executive Office, they are across the street from the White House, you have to get Secret Service clearance to get into the building, there are very nice people there with guns who will shoot you, this is a serious place.

As a vendor, what in the hell are you thinking...."Hmmm.....Executive....Office.....of the President.........President is a Republican.....Their Color is Blue, No Red.....Red....Ok....Ill wear the Red Logo'd Golf Shirt.....that will surely get us the deal.

In case you ever wonder what to wear to a client's location, ask yourself what would a lawyer, management consultant, or executive coach wear to this location and go with that.

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