Image refers to physical appearance as well as an overall impression of the personality of an individual. Image consulting is the practice of assisting professionals with the overall impression they make on others. An image consultant may work with both men and women on everything from wardrobe to etiquette.
Initial image consulting may include an interview to discover the client’s personality, goals, and personal style. A consultant may schedule a wardrobe review to assist the client in choosing what items should be kept, updated, or discarded. Personal grooming, such as hairstyle, hair color or makeup, may be assessed as well. Some image consultants offer makeovers and personal shopping services.
The goal of image consulting is to provide the client with the tools to present themselves in the best possible light. In addition to updating wardrobe, a consultant will often help the client ensure that clothes fit properly and are visually flattering. Clients may be educated in how to dress to minimize potential flaws and how to accessorize an outfit for maximum impact.
Beyond physical appearance coaching, image consulting can also provide training to improve communication skills. This may include discussion of body language in addition to spoken communication. Vocabulary, pronunciation, and general conversation skills may also be addressed.
Brief lessons may be offered on basic business etiquette. Advice on telephone manners, guidelines for written business communication, and suitable meeting behaviors may be presented. Some image consultants offer a review of appropriate dinner meeting etiquette.
An image consulting firm may offer services to large groups or corporations. If a business finds that the image portrayed by its employees is not consistent with what it wants to project to the public, an image consultant can work with the group. In such a case, everyone in the company is sharing in the vision and participating in presenting that image to the public.
Image consulting is also used in some university settings. As graduates leave college and begin searching for employment, a consultant can provide them with guidance to help them achieve their professional goals. With wardrobe recommendations and etiquette perfected, these graduates can project confidence and success in job interviews.
Seeking advice from an image consulting agency can help a person build self confidence. Knowing that she has chosen a flattering wardrobe, appropriate makeup, and a chic hair style may show in her overall demeanor at work. This self assurance is often reflected in an overall attitude and posture that can make a positive difference in career potential.