For those of you scratching your heads (Sorry, I’m in a punning kind of mood) at the title—and the topic—of this piece, here’s a newsflash: many, many people spend as much (or more) time thinking about how they’re going to wear their hair at their presentation as they do thinking about what they’re going to say at their presentation. (And while I will admit the preponderance of these conversations tend to be with women, I have had in-depth hair conversations with my male clients, too.) My trouble is that I can think of few people in the world less qualified to talk about hair than myself. Mine mystifies me, which is why I outsourced the whole project to my wonderful stylist, Dickey, and why I sat down with him recently to get the answers to some of your most pressing questions: STRAIGHT OR CURLY? Dickey’s specialty is textured hair, which is how I ended up in his chair. What we’ve both observed from our work with hundreds of clients is that there are certain professions that prefer straight hair— for example, finance, telecommunications, business/strategic consulting. For whatever reason wearing your hair straight makes them feel you are more in control of your information. UP OR DOWN? Those with long hair struggle with the “Up or down?” question. In this realm we have one hard and fast rule, and a few recommendations: Rule: I don’t care which you choose—and I’m sorry if I sound like your mother– but GET IT OUT OF YOUR FACE. Nothing is more distracting than having your bangs in your eyes, wisps trailing near your mouth, etc. General recommendations: Again, more ‘controlled’ professions are going to prefer a more ‘controlled’ look. If you’re worried you look young for your age, putting it up will give you far more authority than wearing it down. LONG OR SHORT? This often comes down to face shape, hair texture, etc. (For example, if your face is small, big hair isn’t going to serve you.) The most important thing, however, is that you look like you chose your style—rather than having it look like something you defaulted to in College and never gave another thought. After all, you don’t want to it to look like you could—with a quick outfit change—be serving chicken wings and beer in Any College Town, Anywhere USA. Anthony Dickey is the founder of HairRules. He believes many women struggle with the one-sized fits all approach to hair care, but if there was more focus on an individually prescribed, texture-specific approach women could execute whatever style they wish more confidently. Hair Rules is a unique, texture-specific approach to hair care- giving women options to wear their hair any way they choose, via healthy, responsible methods. For more go to www.hairrules.com
Frances Cole Jones founded Cole Media Management in 1997 to help clients identify and cultivate their inherent strengths and, through these, develop the powerful communication skills that enhance personal and professional performance. Writing The Wow Factor and How to Wow has been her way of reaching a wider audience, “My goal is to have every person who picks these up, put them down feel more confident in their ability to present their best self --in any situation.” Prior to founding Cole Media Management, Frances worked at St. Martin’s Press, Viking Penguin, Doubleday, and Broadway Books as an editor of commercial nonfiction, working on popular psychology, parenting, self-help and how-to books. The experience of helping authors translate their ideas into books that retained their unique voice is what makes her valuable to her clients. “There’s no point in my writing a perfectly crafted sound bite that you have to strain to remember,” Frances says. “You have to sound like you—authenticity is integral to trust.” As President of Cole Media Management, Frances’ clients have appeared on The Today Show, Good Morning America, Oprah, C-SPAN, CNN, Squawkbox, The Charlie Rose Show, Larry King Live, The Discovery Channel, The BBC News, E! Entertainment, Access Hollywood, Project Runway, Top Chef, ESPN, Extra! Fox and Friends, The View, Cashin’ In, QVC and others. Clients' print interviews have appeared in publications including The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Forbes, Newsweek, Vogue, W, O Magazine, Town & Country, Harper's Bazaar, Tatler, etc. The scope of their work includes preparation for television and print interviews, IPO road shows, meetings with potential investors, and internal meetings with partners, sales staff, and in-house personnel. They also provide presentation skills seminars and speechwriting for clients. Frances also writes for WomenOnBusiness.com, Intent.com, DivineCaroline.com, and Executive Travel. Her first book, HOW TO WOW, was published by Ballantine in 2008.