When is a good time to update your professional image?

Today I was photographing professional business head shots for a sales professional that works for a large company here in Raleigh. As we were discussing clothing options and the right expression for his image, he said he was already planning to come back in 6 months for an updated image. I was flattered but wasn’t sure why, so as we talked more he mentioned that he was planning to lose 40 lbs and get an updated image at that point.

Makes perfect sense. Any time you have a major change in appearance, you should consider updating your professional image that you use on on social media profiles such as LinkedIn as well as your business cards, website etc. Why? Good question, glad you asked. Regardless of whether you’re in a job search scenario, own your own business, or represent a company, chances are potential clients or employers will do a little research on you before deciding to do business with you or your company, or before deciding to interview you. What will they see? There is a very high probability they will see one or more of your social media profile images. So, what message will yours convey? What first impression will your image make for you? One sure way to create a bad first impression is to have a poor quality image or one that doesn’t represent how you currently look. Regarding the latter, when potential employers or clients meet you in person, and you don’t look like the image that represents you online, there is an immediate trust barrier that goes up, because in their mind, you misrepresented yourself. So if you’ve lost weight, had a significant hair style change, or any other changes affecting your appearance, you might want to consider updating you professional image.

Business_Portraits-1000PrintA recent client image, though not the one referred to in the article.

 

Corporate Head Shots

Studio head shot for a business professional we photographed recently. A great expression that fit well with his personality. Just one of the many pieces of the puzzle that come together to make a great professional portrait.

Corporate Head Shot Image

Corporate Head Shot

A recent studio shoot for a good friend and CEO at Apogee Social Media Group. http://www.apogeesocialmediagroup.com/

William does lots of Linked In specific training for companies and individuals and knows the importance of having a good professional image online to represent your personal or corporate brand. We were going for something a little more contemporary / modern to update his professional image, so we went with a high-key background (lighter tone), but kept with the traditional male head shot pose. This combination works well together and he was more than pleased with the look. You can never go wrong with classic posing and lighting, even when mixed with more modern or contemporary looking backgrounds or settings. Corporate head Shot

 

Classic head shots with a modern, contemporary look

An image we created recently for a high level executive that was looking for a slightly more modern, contemporary look. It was a fun shoot using a green screen and a little Photoshop work for the background, and I think it’s safe to say, we nailed it! Client was more than happy with the results. Love helping create a finished product that meets our clients vision.

Corporate Head Shot

Article from Forbes on why women need a professional portrait

Interesting article from Forbeswoman on why women need a professional portrait today. Click here to read: http://www.forbes.com/sites/work-in-progress/2010/09/16/professional-women-need-a-professional-portrait/

Same principals apply to men, but the interesting thing about this article was how a bad photo, in this case the company badge photo – also being used for the internal profile photo, was most likely creating a very negative perception of her in her work environment, and possibly hurting her chances for advancement. Unfortunately perception is reality in today’s online world, and most potential employers or clients will see a profile photo of you before they interview or do business with you. What does your LinkedIn profile image say about you, and does the quality of that photo fit with your credentials?

Female Business Portrait

 

CharlesDickensPhotography-1000What a pleasure it was working with Patricia on creating her professional business portrait. She’s a high level executive working on polishing up her personal brand online and knew that a professional business portrait was a key piece of the overall professional branding strategy.