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Dress for Success (in 1976 )

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Millerp, Apr 27, 2006.

  1. Metal Circus

    Metal Circus Senior member

    Mar 11, 2006
    I question the purpose of a watch at all. Not that this forum is the epitome of convenience and practicality, but who doesn't have a cell phone, or worse, a blackberry with built-in clock?
  2. Nantucket Red

    Nantucket Red Senior member

    Mar 10, 2006
    Upper East Coast
    Why gold? Silver is perfectly fine.

    Few watches are actually (sterling) silver. Many are stainless, white gold or platinum, and these are all perfectly acceptable. He is correct about what type of watch and watch case is appropriate.

    I question the purpose of a watch at all. Not that this forum is the epitome of convenience and practicality, but who doesn't have a cell phone, or worse, a blackberry with built-in clock?

    It's a matter of elegant sensibilities, which a fine watch expresses to others. In terms of practicality, I far prefer glacing at a discreet wristwatch to hauling out a whole handful of electrical appliance and in some cases needing to press buttons or use both hands. I think LabelKing's remark about cell phones being the "ersatz pocket watch" was very apt. In my opinion, the cell phone-as-watch realizes a stylistic nadir through the optimum combination of inelegance and inconvenience.
  3. Jovan

    Jovan Senior member

    Mar 10, 2006
    I guess I'm guilty of that...
  4. vc2000

    vc2000 Senior member

    Mar 1, 2004
    The Dress for Success book is in my mind a book that teaches the basics. A case of you must learn to walk before you run. Changes come with technology and style but for the most part the Dress for Success remains a core of the wardrobe. The book has been updated since 1976 so I think it is a bit unfair.

    I started out in the legal field where the book was a staple. The firm I worked for even had us attend one of Molloy's seminars. I learned from it the basics which it would have taken me decades to learn otherwise. From the basics I learned that I could break/bend the rules. Hard to know how to do that if you don't know the rules.

    I am mid to three quarters of my way through my career. I can't say how much of my success has come from the way I dress. More then one opportunity has come my way though because of it. The first time I attended a high level negotiation was because the CEO told me I looked the part. From there I took the ball and ran with it. Using the easiest measure of success - financial - I very comfortable - not to brag but I have more then I will be able to spend in my lifetime. I think dress is important enough that I pay for seminars at the schools I attended. I realize had I not managed my dress I wouldn't be where I am today. I love(d) both my Father and Grandfather but their influence wouldn't have served me well as the later only had one suit his entire life and the former thought short sleeve shirts and a clip on tie were stylish. On that example I doubt I would have stood on the floor of the NASDAQ or NYSE over 90 times with an investment going IPO.

    Today the book is out of fashion as it is the center of a discrimination lawsuit. I no longer work at the law firm but I use them for some of my legal needs. The current new associates really hurt themselves by not using a reference like Dress for Success. I have on a couple of occassions asked to have an associate removed from my business because I didn't like how they dressed. That sounds harsh but I'm paying the bill and I expect to be represented in a manner that I feel represents me. For example one associate continued to show up to conferences without a tie in a very South Beach style clothing. Tight pants near disco style, bright silky shirt unbuttoned to near navel. The negotiations were for a multi- billion merger. Nobody took him serious so they didn't take us serious. When I expressed my displeasure about his appearance he said that he "was expressing his personality." I attempted to explain to him his dress was as unacceptable in the negotiations as it would be to wear business attire to a nightclub or a three piece suit to scuba dive. Had he just read "Dress for Success" he could have avoided this. Instead he was given a ticket back to the HQ office and I assume it deadended his career. Today he is probably expressing himself behind the desk or has moved to a smaller firm with less potential.

    I guess I would argue that a lot of decisionmakers cut their teeth using Dress for Success or the Molloy cookie cutter suit. Not such a bad idea to know what they think is appropriate.

    Sure some of the rules seem silly. I rebelled at them even. I like(d) to wear purple ties or green. But I have to admit that when I attend functions with CEOs or people responsible for billions or trillions of dollars (or whatever currency) or the lives of millions or billions I don't see a lot of purple or green ties. I still like purple I just realize that others don't so I wear what the others wear. Not much different from the days of grade school when we all wore the same shoes, pants, shirts. If you wore something different your were hazed. Everybody feels more comfortable when they are dressed similar to someone else. Am I willing to blow a deal because I wear a certain tie when I could wear another? Nope. I admit it.

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