We know that appearance matters in business, especially when you deal face to face with business clients. You don’t have to go over the top with fancy and expensive clothing like suits, ties, and $500 leather shoes from Italy. You do have to be clean and neat with a proper haircut, nails with no trace of dirt, and polished mud-free shoes. It can be a polo shirt and khakis or jeans and a logo tee depending upon your business. You want to put your best foot forward when meeting with the outside world. Any list of must-dos to achieve success will have appearance at the top. This doesn’t just apply to the owner or manager, but to all employees in the vicinity. If they are seen by the public, they have to reflect the same values. You would be surprised how much clients notice even if they seem distracted by your words.
Also surprising to some, a well-appointed office is high on the same list. Even if you are in the computer field or are a free-lance graphic artist, if clients are visiting, they expect something organized, well-lit, and clean. If you work from home, you have escaped this problem. You don’t have to have a huge office and location doesn’t matter: city or suburbs. You do have to wield the vacuum now and then to tidy up the floors. Your furniture can be in any style as long as it isn’t too eclectic and looks like it comes from grandma’s attic. When in doubt, go modern. Spotted windows draw the eye—in a negative way. Dishes in the office lounge speak of laziness and lack of caring. Desks should not look like wrecks every day of the week. Carpets should be dirt and debris free. It takes some effort. If you get everyone on board, maintaining your business space will be that much easier.
I mentioned the vacuum because some of my friends don’t have a cleaning crew (it can get pricey) and use a cheap Hoover from https://www.thevacuumchallenge.com/best-cheap-hoover-vacuums/. No one wants to do the dirty work, but you can take turns. Hire a student to come in twice a week if you must. It will take the burden off the staff. I can’t see a petite executive assistant shoving a huge upright around, sweeping a wide cleaning path. She would have to use all her strength. Find a better way around the problem and I vote for professional help. They will dust the desks, clean the sink, mop the lounge tile floor, and do assorted cleaning tasks. Remember those spotted windows? Services specialize in this kind of work.
Apart from dress for success and keeping house at the office, there are a few other pointers about connecting well with clients. Greet them the minute they arrive and offer coffee or water. Some larger firms have snacks. Make them feel at home and if they have to wait, offer a comfortable chair. Smile openly and show enthusiasm. Your meeting will proceed well.