Numerous studies show that appearance, including dressing „appropriately” strongly influences other people’s perception of someone’s authority, trustworthiness and even intelligence. To climb up the proverbial ladder in any sector, men and women must adhere to local or organizational norms. A simple Google search showed 1,9 million results for „dress code for businessmen” and almost twice as many for „dress code for businesswomen” (3,4 million search results).
No matter if you work for a corporation or a start-up, and if the organizational culture of the company supports more or less formal attire, you still have to adjust to certain (written or unwritten) dress codes, that after a long day can make you feel uncomfortable and – for women – even hurt. Imagine running on high heels from one business meeting to another all day? The leaders we interviewed for this edition of W Insight took a proactive approach and came up with simple but smart solutions that can make women’s professional lives just a bit easier. But what’s more important: they prove that it is possible to look for innovation in seemingly old-fashioned industries, and that the simplest ideas really work. They decided to share their experiences and advice in this third edition of W Insight.
Margaux Chérif-Cheikh combined her engineering and business education with an interest in fashion and shoes – specifically. The result is a concept of interchangeable heels and she is now developing her e-shop. With us, she shares the story of her road to entrepreneurship and work-life balance.
Dress for success is also the topic of the talk with Alex Tymann and Anna Rauch, who gave up their consulting and banking jobs to develop tights that do not run and are seamless. They share their experience with W Insight of trying various start-up ideas and finally launching „the right one” as best friends.
But there are even more business savvy women in this edition. Aleksandra Hózman Mirza Sulkiewicz, one of the few female American football referees in Poland, says the football field is a perfect place to learn assertiveness and encourages women to learn the magic words: „No discussion!” – this can work on the field as well as off.
Finally, Filip Szumowski, a journalist, shares a story of the inspiring woman he knows, Kaja Kulinicz. A musician by education, Kaja launched an online educational fairy tale library for children who speak Polish. Filip will contribute to the next edition of W Insight by interviewing Kaja.
I hope that the interviews will inspire you to look for innovation in the simplest ideas. They inspired me.