Sixteen years ago, my friend and colleague, Judith, pointed out to me that:
“women notice shoes”.
Sweeping Generalisation Alert
I about to talk in generalisations here, so there are exceptions, of course. I am also talking about British culture, as I know the details of no other – although I suspect that similar cultures, like North America, will be similar in this sense too.
To many men, shoes are shoes.
We wear shoes that look good and are comfortable; then we forget them.
To women, shoes tell a story
– about personality, attitude and status.
Sweep away the Generalisations
Whether or not the generalisations hold, we all do notice details – although we may not notice them at a conscious level. At the unconscious level, shiny, well-cared-for shoes, immaculate grooming and carefully-chosen accessories tell us a lot about the person in front of us. When you take care of the details, it says more to people than “you care about the details”. It also says “you have the time to care” and this implies status. Throughout history, only the richest and most influential people were able to invest in the unnecessary details and we carry that prejudice with us today.
Increase your influence with a little attention to detail.
Roll forward sixteen years
I was reminded of this by another friend and colleague, Angela Marshall. Angela and I are in the early stages of planning an event for the autumn, called “How to make a Stronger Impact when Presenting and Selling”. I will be speaking about business influence and persuasion, sharing seven secrets with our audience. Angela will then show them how to maximise their impact be choosing an appearance that confers instant credibility, whilst working with their true personality.