If you were going on a job interview, you'd wear your best suit, a shirt and a tie.
Yet for some reason young men in this business fail to realize that a resume tape is a job interview. And how you dress on your resume tape is as important as what you wear to an in-person interview.
I realize we have become a casual nation of slobs, but that shouldn't translate to the television news industry. Yet lately I'm see a lot of polo shirts, casual slacks, and other items normally worn on the golf course during coverage of important stories. And while you may think, "Ah, I'll go casual today. This story isn't going on my resume tape," you never know who's watching. Do you want your story to end up on the feed with you looking like a slob?
Seriously guys, it's time to start dressing for success. (And many of you might pick up a copy of that book.) If you want to move up the ladder and have News Directors take you seriously, you need to look the part. If your photog is dressed better than you are, you've got a problem. (And may I say you shooters are looking very spiffy these days.)
Obviously you don't need a suit and tie when doing a story on a pig farm or covering the oil spill on the beach. But for the majority of your stories, dress to the nines.
Are you fashion challenged? Here's where you can go for help:
-Ask one of the women in your newsroom for help. You won't have to twist an arm. (News flash! Women love to shop!) Or visit a nice store and ask for the personal shopper.
-Buy a copy of Esquire, GQ, or both. You don't have to buy thousand dollar suits, but it helps to know what look you're shooting for.
-There's a new fangled invention out there called a steam iron. If your shirts have more wrinkles than a nursing home, break out the iron.
-Watch shows like "Mad Men" and "White Collar." Note how the lead characters dress. Even though Mad Men is set in the 60's, take note of the classic styles.
-Old school never goes out of style. Cuff links, tie bars, wing-tip shoes and pocket squares show a touch of class.
-Learn to tie a necktie. Put a dimple in it, make sure your top shirt button doesn't show, and avoid massive knots.
-Note that young men can look a lot older and more mature in dark suits.
You don't have to spend a fortune to look good. But you do have to at least make the effort.