We know how to dress for a baseball game (casually); and we know how to dress for a networking event (professionally). But how do you dress when the two come together as one?
As a Bruin alumna I am proud to support my school by staying active within the alumni community. And as an aspiring business woman and entrepreneur I see my alma mater as a great opportunity to connect with potential clients and vendors by way of mixers and networking events. So when I received an invitation from my Alumni Association to attend an Angels baseball game and pre-game mixer I immediately booked my ticket! And then I thought… what the heck do I wear?
Sure, I look cute in my Angels hat and I can rock a sports jersey like you’ve never seen before! But do I really want that to be my first impression with a possible new client? Of course not. So I put together an outfit that I think captures the casual nature of the event and my own personal style while keeping it appropriate for the possibility of talking a little business over beers and hot dogs.
(Note: The jeans featured here from Gap are a nice boot cut. Skinny jeans, cropped jeans and cuffed jeans are NOT appropriate for professional events – especially when paired with casual flats. If your boot cuts are too long for flats take them to your local dry cleaners or research a good tailor – most can hem your jeans with the original hemline for only $7 – $10 and, like my mother told me all through junior high, it looks WAY better than when they drag on the ground!)
To keep the mood of this particular event casual and fun while still making sure to show up prepared I am going to embark on a little DIY project and make my own business cards. Gift tags (I prefer ones from Paper Source or Target as they are often printed on recycled paper) and a calligraphy pen are all you need for this project – perfect for smaller mixers or events where formal business cards seem a little, well, too formal! It’s details like this – in addition to a big smile and a fun, confident and professional attitude – that can turn small networking opportunities into new business for you and your company!