A: Standards of dress make a difference, as I discovered more than 30 years ago, when I insisted all our cobblers wear a tie. I wanted to set us apart from the rest of a traditionally scruffy industry. The tie was a symbol of higher quality and better housekeeping.It all depends what business you’re in and who you’re selling to. If you have conservative customers in a traditional trade, you probably need a collar and tie to make the right impression, but it may be that’s out of line – plenty of very smart salesmen never wear a tie. You want your sales team to feel comfortable and confident, so why not let them wear what they want? Within reason, of course – some people are far too casual for their own good. What does your top salesman think? If he’s the one wearing the jeans, you know the time has come to swap the formal gear for something a touch more trendy. John Timpson runs high-street cobbler Timpson, which has 800 branches nationwide and sales of £150m. Got a question for him? Post it in the comments box below.
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