In any business profession, establishing credibility and trust are important to attracting clients and building a reputation amongst colleagues. A key method to do so is through appropriate business attire. Traditionally, business attire for financial advisors meant wearing the typical suit and tie in all instances of client-facing activities. Because psychologically, a suit and tie has been recognized for many years as a symbol of trust and credibility. But as business interactions have evolved (virtual meetings, younger clientele, serving a particular niche, etc.), many advisors tend to feel overdressed wearing a suit and tie and may opt to wear more business-casual attire. However, business interactions have varied greatly in recent years, making it difficult to always understand when it is appropriate to dress more formally, especially for younger, newer advisors who have yet to establish a reputation.
In our 110th episode of Kitces & Carl, Michael Kitces and client communication expert Carl Richards discuss how appropriate business attire can build trust and credibility, understanding what appropriate attire looks like, and ways to determine when to wear certain attire.
Choosing the appropriate business attire begins with understanding the particular business setting. For some advisors, the type of clientele they serve may not be concerned about what the advisor wears, while others who work in large corporate settings or with clients who have expectations that their advisors will adhere to a certain dress code will be compelled to dress more formally. Many advisors, however, may not know what business situation to expect until they meet with their client (prospective or otherwise).
A good rule of thumb for advisors unsure about what to wear is to dress at the same level or 1 step above the client (i.e., if a client is wearing just a dress shirt, the advisor may do the same or may opt to wear a dress shirt – with a tie, for men – or even a full suit). And because it can be difficult to tell what the situation will call for, it is a good idea to always be prepared with full business attire. That way, the advisor can dress up or down without appearing unprepared or inappropriately dressed. Though this may be a sound approach for younger, newer advisors, more established advisors may opt to wear a full suit no matter the business situation and others may feel that anything more than a dress shirt is uncomfortable for them and their clients.
Ultimately, the key point is that even though the ways business is conducted in the financial services industry have evolved, dressing appropriately and building trust and credibility comes down to how comfortable and confident an advisor feels. There will always be advisors and clients who feel full business attire is the only acceptable form of dress, but advisors often have more flexibility when working with clients who feel comfortable with more casual dress. And if their attire helps them feel more confident and comfortable, they will be even more likely to attract the types of clients that are best suited for them!
***Editor's Note: Can't get enough of Kitces & Carl? Neither can we, which is why we've released it as a podcast as well! Check it out on all the usual podcast platforms, including Apple Podcasts (iTunes), Spotify, and Stitcher.
- Kitces & Carl Episode 109: Attracting Clients – An Advisor For Their Goals Or A Role Model Of What They Can Achieve?
- How (New) Advisors Should Dress And The Dangers Of Countersignaling
- Caleb Brown
- New Planner Recruiting
- Jolt Conference
- Matt Hall (Hill Investment Group)
- The Smartest Sales Book You’ll Ever Read: The Truth About Successful Selling by Dan Solin
Kitces & Carl Podcast Transcript
Carl: Michael Kitces, what? What are you doing here? Imagine finding you here.
Michael: Imagine bumping me into you in this Zoom room that we scheduled ourselves...
Carl: Rescheduled Zoom room.
Michael: ... several weeks ago in advance.
Carl: For sure. Okay, listen, we're just going to dive right in because I got a question. I've been thinking about this for a long time. I mean seriously. Seriously, Michael, let's stop with the little games and let's get serious for a second. Come on, what's the deal with the blue shirts? I know we all got the blue shirt, Kitces-Blue, you got all these fancy, but come on, level with us. What's the deal with the blue shirts? Who's allowed...who gave you permission? Especially with this way that you button it down a little bit each time and you can see the other blue. Come on. Talk to me about the blue shirts, Michael.
Michael: Well, all right. So, let me come back to the button-down because that's an evolution unto itself. So, the blue shirt story unto itself, because I don't know if we ever told it on the podcast here before, so this probably goes back 16, 17 years… the mid-2000s. I was just starting down the path of beginning to do, speaking in the industry and going to advisor events. And at the time, it was mostly talking about tax-paying strategies for the alternative minimum tax because that was my big thing back from 2005 to 2007.
Carl: Hey, crazy, me, too.
Michael: Of course. Yeah, we can nerd out on minimum tax credit strategies later. So, I'm starting to travel more, and this was also early days of NextGen. So, we started NextGen back in 2004, and I was involved from the start in getting it underway and then I was the secretary officer actually doing all the signups. So, I was very immersed in early NextGen. And so I'm doing this travel, where back then, I was probably going to speak at events once or twice a month. And almost whenever I was out in an event, I would try to catch up with any of my NextGen friends and colleagues that I could because we were building a really close network.
And so I'm traveling to these events and I start getting some lighthearted grief from a few of my NextGen friends, who were like, "Michael, 3rd time I've seen you this year at a conference and you've had the same shirt every time." At the time, I had a wide wardrobe. I did not only have a blue shirt or multiple blue shirts. Realistically, probably what was happening is I probably just liked the shirt. And because I didn't travel that often, if I had to grab 1 shirt when I was getting ready to go out to pack my bag for 1 day, I was probably just disproportionately grabbing the blue shirt because I liked it and thought it was a nice shirt. But from their end, I might have only worn the blue shirt 7 or 8 times that year, but if the 3 of the times were the 3 days they saw me, they're like, "Dude, I've seen you 3 times this year. You're always wearing the same shirt. What gives?"
So, friends being friends, doing what friends do, I got some very nice good-natured ribbing for a year or 2 about the shirt and then just decided, "What the heck? I'm just going to go in on the blue shirt." It's sort of become a thing accidentally, but it actually is easier to pack, because by then, my speaking was starting to pick up more. I was like, "It actually would be easier if I just had a bunch of these and I just always grabbed a bunch of blue shirts and made that my thing," and just like, "I'll make it my thing. Why not?" And so I did. Sometime, I don't remember exactly, but 2008, 2009 timeframe, I think was when I said, "I'm just going to make the blue shirt a thing."
And so, at that point, once I decided to make it a thing, it was a thing. So, I bought 12 of them, just bulk ordered 12, it was a Van Heusen shirt at the time, which frankly wasn't very expensive, and that was helpful because I didn't make a lot of money then. So, I bought 12 of them so I could grab 5 of them when I'm out on the road for a week, and then when I come back, I can dump 5 off to get laundered. I can grab 5 more for the following week. By the time I come back from the following week, I could drop off those and get the original 5 back. So, I could just keep rotating through when I was a road warrior, and then 2 backups in case something bad happened. And every few years, I would re-up another fresh 12 shirts, because when you do that much travel, you beat the heck out of your clothing. So, I would kind of tear my clothing apart and have to re-up every now and then.
But the origin, it really just started from a...well, probably it was a subconscious, I just liked the color, so I was grabbing it without realizing it with some frequency when I was traveling. And then, at some point, decided to flip it around and say, "Okay, I'm going to make it my thing." Now, this dynamic where then I button it down or pop a button or two and wear a blue undershirt, frankly, that's more recent. Because, early days, candidly, I didn't think I could get away with undoing a button for advisor events. So, tie, suit jacket. Even now, for where I am, if you see me out on the road at events, once in a blue moon, I'll have the tie off. I still almost never take the jacket off. I don't know if is the credibility thing or whatever. I get it. I'm probably reasonably credible in my career at this point, I've been doing it for a little while, but I still can't shed the 'there's a certain way you're supposed to dress'. I started when I was 22. I'm 46 now. I'm like, "I think I can get away without the tie, but I actually still feel compelled to wear the jacket." So, black suit, blue shirt.
Why Wearing Business Attire Is Important While Building A Reputation [06:03]
Carl: That's exactly...sorry to interrupt you, but that's exactly why I wanted to ask you is because, just for everybody listening and watching, this episode is about what we wear as advisors. That's what I wanted to talk about. Because how do we make...? Because I remember spending an inordinate amount of time...I was actually quite bothered by the amount of time I spent wondering what to wear. And it happened at every level of my career.
When clients are coming, what do I wear? When I first started speaking, what do I wear? When I... Now, what do I wear? I still, the last speaking event, I had 2 different things in the suitcase, and I decided, it was a game-time decision. And so, it's super interesting to me to just hear that evolution of what do you wear, but how would you think about that as... Because I clearly... Look, Poncho is my new favorite brand of shirt. And I don't care. You can give me the black one, you give me the gray, when you give me the camel one, I'm going to wear it. I like to button it up because it feels...
Michael: For those who are listening on the podcast in audio format right now, Carl is wearing, it looks like a collared shirt, a businessy collared shirt, except it's camouflage collared.
Carl: You can hardly see me.
Michael: It's a green cam. Yeah, you can barely see the buttons and the collar because it's just kind of a camo pattern, so.
Carl: Yeah. And people have seen... You may have...
Michael: You're not in the usual financial advisor dress wear.
Carl: Yeah. And some of you may have seen this. I wore it to one of the speaking engagements. I spoke at Jolt with my big white flower shirt. I spoke at a huge national conference last week, last month actually, with this similar shirt but in black, and I had a hat on. And so, I've been thinking about this for a long time. So, let's just back up. How do you...? Let me tell you the most useful thing I was told, and then we can go from there. I remember having this exact dialogue with a group of very successful advisors. I was speaking and I decided to turn it into a workshop. This is what I normally do. I get the chance to speak, I may as well solve my own problems. So, I said, "How do you decide what to wear?"
And somebody who I really respect, and, in fact, I don't think he'd mind, Matt Hall, who runs a firm called Hill Investment Group out of St. Louis, he said, "I think you decide what to wear based on what makes you feel comfortable." Like, do you feel confident? Because if you feel confident, that's really actually what matters. So, there wasn't any, "Well, you should wear a suit and tie till you're this age and you should wear that and you should do that." It was, "What makes you feel confident and comfortable." And by comfortable, I don't think he meant loungewear. I think he meant in your own skin, like, comfortable. So, that was the best advice I ever got. Where do you go from here in terms of how do you decide what to wear?
Michael: So, the version of this that I got in that early career advice was, "You should always be 1 step above wherever the client is." So, if the client's got a dress shirt, I've got a tie. If the client's got a tie, I've got a jacket. Apologies...
Carl: Hey, where does that advice come from?
Michael: I don't know. Literally, what my sales manager told me when I was getting started, "Look, if you show up in the suit, the full suit and you dress the nines and they're hanging out there in their jeans and a T-shirt, it's going to look weird." So, you can only be so far apart before it gets socially awkward. And so, just the way it was taught to me was dress 1 step up from wherever the client is. And this was particularly in the context of this is 22-year-old me, maybe we'll come back to it now because I think about it a little bit differently in this age and stage of career.
But when I'm 22-year-old me and fighting for credibility, that was the version of essentially, you want to look good and credible, but you don't want to look like you're trying too hard, right? If I show up in the suit when you're wearing jeans and a T-shirt, it kind of looks like I'm trying too hard. But if you're wearing a suit, and I've dressed down to open collar, no tie, it looks like I'm just cruising or even disrespectful, or at least that's the perception risk. And certainly, when I think back to where I was in getting going, in my 20s, especially my early 20s, a lot of us say, and I feel like it's true, I was 22, I looked like I was maybe 18, and I had... And now it's just because I had the goatee. If I shaved the goatee off, I would look 16. So, the goatee was credibility, like truly. The goatee was age credibility early on. Now, I put it into the logo for the little kids' nerd icon.
So, now I have to keep it because it's the brand. But originally, it was age credibility because I looked even more babyface without it. And I was just trying to at least look like I was in my 20s when I'm sitting across from someone and trying to get some level of credibility. And I still remember the first time, I didn't follow the formula, as it were, and I got slapped for it. So, in 2006, because it was scarring enough, I remember it that clearly, in 2006, I got an opportunity to speak for FPA Dallas/Fort Worth for their inaugural career day. Caleb Brown had put it together back when we were early NextGen, this was before he launched the New Planner Recruiting business. But Caleb was always really passionate about younger advisors and next-generation advisors. I was just starting to do my stuff around. There were new emerging career tracks for advisors where you don't have to sell things the whole time because I was building my director of financial planning thing. Like, I do the plans and I deliver them to clients, but I don't have to go prospect for them.
And so, he gave me an opportunity to come and speak at FPA DFW's Career Day about emerging new career tracks. And so, at the time, this was very early in my speaking world, I was talking about this based on the career path that I was crafting in my firm, which was Pinnacle Advisory Group at the time. And so I decided, I'm going to rep Pinnacle. I'm going to wear a Pinnacle shirt. So, there was actually an event that I showed up that I was not wearing a blue shirt, because the Pinnacle shirts were gray with our green logo on them at the time. And so, I'm wearing this gray shirt, green logo, no tie, no jacket, like, just good professional shirt. I'm reasonably clothed here, but no tie, no jacket, speaking in front of an advisor audience that candidly tends to be a little bit more dressed up, and had multiple written feedback comments in the evaluation form. No joke. Like, "Speaker looked unprofessional." "Speaker wasn't credible." "Too unprofessional."
Carl: Here's why...
Michael: It was all about what I was wearing. I was wearing my company's formal dress shirt but no jacket, no tie, in a room full of people that were mostly wearing jackets and ties and got called out very explicitly for it.
How Different Business Settings Affect What Business Attire To Wear [13:38]
Carl: Oh, man. That's exactly what I wanted to ask about was...my first question was this whole conversation about being young. And is that all just in our heads? Let's just put that out there because you're now saying "no" because you got called out for it very specifically. So, my next point would be...
Michael: Not just 1 eval comment, 1 random snarky person. Because anyways, for the speaker, you know there's always a random person that just wants to take a shot at something. Like, multiple repeated comments.
Carl: So, yeah. And maybe this is just a career issue, like, you're further along in your career now. But I show up to a national conference in a shirt like this with a hat on, with a dragon on it...
Michael: You're Carl Richards, dude.
Carl: That makes me terribly uncomfortable. So, I just want to be clear about that. Is that the truth?
Carl: If somebody who didn't have 20 years of reputation bill, is that an earned position? Fairly or unfairly, is that an earned position?
Michael: So, I'd answer it 2 ways. One, I really do think it's an earned position, to an extent. I do think it's an earned position. I'm certainly conscious, self-aware. I show up differently now than I did in my 20s. Some of that's years of experience, some of that's just built a brand and a credibility that usually when I'm walking into the room to meet with someone, they have some familiarity with my background at this point. I'm not a stranger trying to demonstrate that I'm a credible financial advisor. They probably have some sense that I'm a credible financial advisor and we're just getting to know each other a little better. So, the context is meaningfully different in that way, that, at least for me, it means every now and then, I take off the tie, and still only every now and then. Usually, I wear the tie, and always, I wear the jacket. Like, I'm still only that far.
There is a secondary effect that...and I'll give him a shout-out, Derek Tharp actually did an article about this. Because believe it or not, there's literally nerdy research articles on professional dress strategies, I guess for lack of a better word, and there is a phenomenon that is known as countersignaling. Countersignaling is essentially, "I'm so credible, I'm going to consciously, deliberately buck the trend. And the fact that I can buck the trend just makes me more credible because I can do it." Which candidly, I think is the version that you're living now. You've gotten to the point where showing up in an advisor event in a pink flamingo shirt and a dragon hat is just...
Carl: There were no pink flamingos, by the way.
Michael: There were no flamingos?
Michael: It was just pink?
Carl: If Poncho made a pink one, I'd be all over it. But they didn't. But anyway. Point well taken.
How 'Enclothed Cognition' Can Affect Perceived Credibility [16:57]
Michael: So, there comes a point where that's just peak Carl leaning in to say, "Yeah, I'm Carl Richards. I'm fricking showing up in a flamingo shirt and a dragon hat because I can do that and I've got awesome stuff, and you know I have awesome stuff." Like, you completely deliver the goods. This isn't a, like, "I'm being ostentatious for the sake of being ostentatious," or anything of the like. It is, "I so know where I am and my value and I'm comfortable with it that I don't even mind putting out there, as a signal through dress, that I am that good and I know I'm that good, and that's why I'm hanging out up here in dragon hat and Flamingo shirt," and whatever you want to wear, comfy shorts, right? And you can lean into it that far. So, it's actually a documented thing. It's called counter signaling of, "I'm so good, I can buck the trend." And it just amplifies up the credibility.
But the broader context of this to me is, I think there is a very legitimate phenomenon around what we do when we're trying to be credible, right? To me, this all comes down to credibility. This is all different versions and lenses of credibility. And we're at one place around credibility when we're younger, newer, earlier in our careers, right? When we don't have a track record, and a business reputation, and a brand, and gray hair, and whatever else it is that you want to add in there. So, we're trying to put anything forth that we can to demonstrate we're credible, of which, how we dress is only 1 option, 1 of the few that we've got in our control.
But for me, at least, again, maybe this was my limited experience as well, but I always felt I had to dress to fight for that credibility early on. And for me, at least, the time I showed up not doing that and got called out many, many times by multiple people is, "Okay, got the message. I'm definitely not there yet. I'm going to go back to my jacket and tie and make sure I continue to do that very consistently going forward." And was very focused on that for, I don't know, 10-plus years thereafter.
Carl: Yeah. And I think pointing to the science is really interesting. I ran across...back when I was thinking about this a lot, I ran across this research on enclothed cognition.
Michael: Enclothed cognition. Okay.
Carl: Enclothed cognition. Which was a series of experiments that were run where, and I'm paraphrasing, and I'm sure we can link to the actual studies, the people showed up with something that looked... They went to see, in a lab setting...the participants in the experiment went to see somebody in a lab setting. And in 1 set of people who were wearing what clearly, they were told, was a lab jacket, a doctor's lab jacket. And the other set of people that they were talking to were wearing something that looks very similar, but they were told it was a painter's, like, a painter's smock or something, whatever they call them. Like, something you'd wear... And the people who had on... So, there was 2 pieces of...
The amount of selective attention that the people received was driven by 2 things in the end, which was they had on...they were physically wearing the clothes, so the lab jacket, and its symbolic meaning, so they were told that it was a lab jacket. So, I think there's a lot there that's, like, look... So, it's really cool to me that you mentioned science, right? Because I'm sure we are not the first people to think about this.
Michael: Yeah. To think about appropriate professional dress wear?
Carl: So, 2 places I would point. One, Dan Solin's book, The Greatest Sales Book, I think it's called, "The Smartest Sales Book." Dan Solin. I really, really, really like Dan because he always goes and looks at what the research says. And even if he doesn't like it, he is like, "I don't like this research, but this is what it says." And that's what he did.
Michael: Which he usually actually explains it that way too. It's very…
Carl: Yeah, yeah. And that's what he did in that book, which I just thought was great. And...
Michael: I guess for people who are listening, Dan Solin, S-O-L-I-N, Dan Solin. And, yeah, I believe it's called "Greatest Sales Book Ever".
Carl: Isn't it "The Smartest?" It's his whole series on "The Smartest," yeah, "The Smartest..." Well, anyway, we'll make sure we get that clear in the show notes. That's super interesting. And he found a lot... And I think he was the one that might have, in the research, the idea...and I know this idea's been around a lot longer than Dan's book, but I think he put in his book that idea of just 1 step up. Just 1 step up.
Michael: Okay. Is that where it came from?
Carl: I think, as I recall. The second piece of research that I think is really interesting is this research that was done on...the term that they actually coined, the term was 'enclothed cognition'.
Michael: That sounds like a very academic term. So, what is enclothed cognition?
Carl: Yeah. Enclothed cognition. So, they did a bunch of research, I'm paraphrasing, please go read the original research, but the research essentially was people showed up in a sort of lab setting and they had 2 different people presenting. And one was in a...what they were told, everybody was told it's a lab coat, "That's a lab coat. That's what a doctor wears. That's a lab coat." And the other one was is a less formal...actually, I think it was the same setting, but that person had on something that was very close, but was what an artist would wear while painting, an artist smock, or whatever it's called.
And the devoted, the selective attention was much higher when the person had on the lab coat. And so, their conclusion was really that 2 things needed to happen. One was, they needed to have on the clothing, right? The principles of enclothed cognition, the 2 variables were physically wearing the clothing, and number two, which I think is really important for our conversation, is the symbolic meaning of the clothes they were wearing. So, I was...
Michael: Now you're just taking me back to last episode of why we're so anxious about the cars we drive, and the rest of how we're perceived is... Yeah, my takeaway from that research is basically, "Yeah, if you want clients to think of you as an advisor, you have to dress the way they would expect advisors to be dressed," because that's part of the enclothed cognition. Unless you dress how...
Carl: Yeah. Maybe there's a...
Michael: ...Carl Richards dresses because you would expect Carl Richards to show up that way, so you've got more latitude, but...
Carl: And, yeah, maybe there's you have to do that until you don't, and we don't know where that is. But the other example that I got once was a friend who, he's been a longtime friend of mine, he is a...well, we first met because he is a child psychiatrist. And we first met when my parents got divorced when we were 8. We've been meeting every month since. That's a long time, 42 years. But he's a psychiatrist. He was a client and he was a friend. And I remember asking him about this once, and he compared it to...remember the old movie "Patch Adams?" So, Patch Adams, it was Robin Williams. He was a doctor, as I recall, he was working with kids. And I recall it was in critical situations, maybe cancer in kids. Like, it was...
And he would wear a clown nose, or he would wear the doctor coat, but he would tie-dye it or something. And he pointed out, "Okay, what if your brain surgeon showed up that way?" It would be different than the pediatric [doctor] showing up that way. So, there was some expectation. So, his advice was, "Don't give another barrier. Don't make me deal with, like, 'Is he dressed that way because he is a slacker? Is he dressed that way because he doesn't understand symbolic meaning?' Now, I've got a shock. I've gotta reconcile. You've just put a piece of cognitive dissonance between you and I, and I've gotta reconcile that." So, that leads us all the way back to, like, I don't know. I think the right way to think about it is symbolic meaning, what's the expectation the client's going to have? Because this is going to vary from city to city, for sure.
When In Doubt, Dress 'One Step Above The Client' [25:40]
Michael: Absolutely. To me, that was...for better or worse, that's why I found the framing of 'one step above the client' to be very helpful. And frankly, the strategy, because you don't always know what that's going to be sometimes until the clients show up. I would start in, okay, I'm going to have the jacket and the tie, and all of it. Okay. If my client shows up more casual, okay, well, then as soon as they come in and we say hello, I'm going to take the jacket off. If they're hanging out in jeans and a T-shirt, then I'm going to take the jacket off and I'm going to make some joke about the tie as well, and I'm going to take the tie off. And then I'm in dress shirt and they're in T-shirt, and I'm still kind of doing a 1 step above.
So, I was always very cognizant as meetings got started. If I wasn't sure where to dress to be one step up, I would dress all the way up but I would start dialing it down to get to 1 step above the client as quickly as I comfortably could so that we could maintain that layer. And to me, that was, I think, part credibility marker. And frankly, at least, as I always felt it, and this might be my own script to my head, I always felt it was a respect to the client acknowledgment as well. Like, I respect you and the relationship enough that, like, yes, I have come in a professional dress because I want to show that level of respect and courtesy to you as the client that this is what you expect to see from me. And so, I will take the trouble to make sure that that's how I show up.
And again, that doesn't have to be right or wrong. I'm sure there are other people that do other versions of that and do that successfully and credibly. Although I would challenge, because I've had this conversation with a few advisors over the years, they're like, "Yeah, I wear my T-shirt now. Clients come in, I just tell them that this is how it is." I'm like, "Cool, but I know that you've been doing this for 20-something years." And I think that may be something you only get to do because you've been doing this for 20-something years. If that's where you are in your career and you're there, cool, and more power to you.
But I remember going through this not that long ago for the earlier stage of my career, and I think how you dress matters, unless you're very explicitly with clients where it doesn't. And I do think it's relevant that you have to be mindful of it, if only because enclothed cognition acknowledges if you're not dressed how they're expecting to see a financial advisor dressed, that actually creates a tension to the relationship unto itself. And particularly, if we're talking prospects or newer clients, fair to know, you get in a certain level with the client, and maybe that becomes a little more relaxed across the board.
Carl: Yeah, yeah. To me, this all goes back to Matt Hall's advice of, "What do you feel confident in?" Because I did not feel, 5 years ago, certainly 10 years ago, showing up to a keynote speech wearing a shirt like this, not necessarily camo. This is still a stretch. I'm going to try it...
Michael: Of course, you are.
Carl: But if I show up and I don't feel comfortable, I'll put on just the plain black one. But I know, 10 years ago, I wouldn't have felt comfortable. And that would've shown up in the way I presented. And so, I think that's really a good gauge. If you know the research, you know about symbolic meaning, you know all of that stuff, then how do you really decide? Well, why don't you just decide on what makes you feel comfortable and confident? Because I would not have felt...and it would've been inappropriate for me to do that 10 years ago. It's more appropriate now for whatever reason. And again, I don't know why, but I'm sure glad, because it's really fun. But, yeah, I think there is risk in saying, "Well, Mark Zuckerberg wears hoodies." Eh.
Michael: Yeah. Well, that was the part I remember, I mean, I think some version of this stage early in my career as well, having some version of so-and-so famous figure wears, whatever, hoodies, T-shirts, whatever it is, "Well, why can't I?" Yeah.
Carl: It's always Steve Jobs, right? The turtleneck.
Michael: Yeah. Steve Jobs wears his turtleneck to things. Why can't I do that? It's because he founded Apple and you're a 23-year-old trying to get credibility with a prospect.
Carl: Yeah. Well, and at one point, he was wearing even sloppier stuff, but that actually was a barrier, not a help, right, until it became a thing. So, yeah, that's super helpful. So, I really think, to me, enclothed cognition, one step, you know, just one adjacent step above what a client's wearing, status, symbolic status, symbolic representation, and what you feel comfortable with. To me, that's where I've landed in on all this.
Carl: Cheers, Michael. Super fun.
Michael: Thank you, Carl. Appreciate it.