The secret dress code – what NOT to wear to a business meeting

People form an opinion about individual competencies from the first seconds they see a person. It is not the speech manner or the knowledge that first contributes to the forming of an image of a person, but the dress code.

Generally speaking, when we first meet someone, we have about 30 to 40 seconds to make an impression. This means that one should be very careful when choosing clothes to wear for a job interview, first day at work and a business meeting. To better understand the secrets of the dress code for a business meeting, imagine that you are having a meeting with a potential client or partner. Your competitor has also been invited. The project will either go to you or him after this meeting. You are wearing a short, flimsy dress and your competitor is wearing a black, business suit. Who do you think inspires more credibility?

While looking too sexy at a business meeting is never a good idea, the same stands true for wearing clothes that are too neutral or completely unappealing. Showing too much skin, wearing too much perfume or excessive jewelry are common mistakes women can make when it comes to what not to wear to a business meeting.

The secret dress code for women at business meetings is not about blending in the background; it is about looking feminine and empowered, all at the same time. You can wear feminine options such as dresses and skirts to business meetings, even paired with heels. However, it is crucial to choose wisely. Consider the image you want to present to your business partner and select the outfit accordingly.

What NOT to wear to a business meeting?

  • Anything sparkling, metallic colours, glitter. Even if your meeting is in the evening, all that shines is not appropriate.
  • Camisoles, cropped, printed, lacy tank tops and strapless tops and dresses are not a wise choice when it comes to business meetings. Even if you think you can elegantly wear them, the dress code is rigorous when it comes to this.
  • Sports shoes, flats, sneakers. It doesn’t matter if you meet in a coffee shop or a conference room, the recommendation is to wear heels or formal shoes to a business meeting.
  • Clothes with a certain degree of transparency. It doesn’t matter how good you think you look in that dress or shirt. If it is even remotely transparent, you shouldn’t wear it to the business meeting. You don’t want your partner to talk about the colour and cut of your bra…
  • Skirts and dresses that are too short. Under the knee length, as well as the midi length is the acceptable standard when it comes to business meetings.
  • Anything with a deep cleavage. People associate cleavage with sexy, not professional.
  • Clothes that are not ironed.
  • Unpolished or dusty shoes.