The image of professionalism

An anecdote about James Caan’s experiences shortly after he founded his Alexander Mann recruitment agency serves as a reminder of the importance of projecting the correct business image.

When first starting out, Caan rented office space in Pall Mall, believing that such a prestigious address was crucial to presenting the professional, successful image he believed would ensure his success. As a result, the office was tiny and had no meeting spaces. In fact, he couldn’t even open his door fully as it was blocked by his desk. As a result, Caan would meet potential business partners in the foyer of the building and invite them to the Ritz, claiming that all his company’s meeting rooms were “in use” at the time.

Caan’s business acumen has served him well through a highly successful career so it should be no surprise that he correctly identified that where you host meetings and where your office is based plays a big part in determining success.

Unfortunately, not everyone has easy access to the Ritz instead, but the fact remains that potential clients or investors will still want to feel assured that the company they are dealing with is a successful and professionally run business.

Of course, projecting the correct business image spans a range of factors, including the way you dress, your body language and your mannerisms, along with your working environment.

The key benefit of rented meeting rooms is that entrepreneurs can reap the rewards of operating from a prime central London location without the long-term commitment of taking permanent office space.

Taking your professional image seriously and, particularly, emphasising this through environment makes a lot of sense in the modern business world. Entrepreneurs intent on becoming future James Caans’ should seek to show clients they mean business – and rewards will quickly follow.

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