03/28/2012 02:05 EDT | Updated 05/28/2012 05:12 EDT

Style and Grace in the Workplace


I'm frequently asked by readers (Canada's most notable young professionals) for professional style advice. So I'm here today to fill you in on the timeless tips you need to know to guarantee you set yourself apart from your co-workers. No, I'm not just talking about style as it relates to fashion; style is about one's demeanour and how you carry yourself. That's exactly what this post is about... style and grace.

Dress To Impress

I'll be the first to say it: "Work clothes" are not nearly as formal today as they once were. Unless you're in finance, law or accounting, the odds are that you aren't wearing a suit and tie or formal skirt to work these days. Now, ladies and gents, that doesn't mean that you should look casual like you would on Sunday brunch. Not at all. Take time to put together a stylish and sharp outfit every day. I'm not suggesting suit and tie or stilettos necessarily, but I do advise to plan it out, go shopping and always dress as if you just might meet "Mr. or Ms. Big" today. You never know, it could happen.

Less Is Not More

Whether you've got a stunner bod or not, it doesn't matter -- less is not more in the office. Less means less classy and less respectable, and that's about it. People will take you less seriously if you show everything you've got. If you want to strut your stuff, go for it. Just keep it for outside of work if you want to be invited in to that important boardroom meeting. Trust me on this one.

Know Who You Work With

Make it a priority to know everyone you work with on a first name basis. More importantly, find time to learn one thing about them, whether it be a hobby, where they're originally from, what they like about their position... anything, really! You are a person who is working towards a promotion, right? Be it superiors or subordinates, those who lead need to be well liked and respected by their co-workers. Your boss sees how you interact with others in the office; they listen and look for these signs in their staff. Learn about what sport Dave plays three nights a week and that Sarah actually moved here from Vancouver. Get to know them, stay on track, and one day the entire office will know you.

Get to Know Your Boss's Boss

Want to skip the ranks and get promoted fast? It's easy to do. Here's how: get to know your boss's boss. Develop a rapport with him or her and you will reap the benefits in a major way. Getting to know the key players is a key attribute of young professionals who are making strategic moves within their company. Go out of your way to get to know your boss's boss -- why wouldn't you?

Ladies and gents, that's how to have style and grace at the workplace. Remember, someone is going to, it may as well be you.

Cheers and stay Notable,

Julian Brass

Founder and Editor-in-Chief,