Benjamin Franklin's Virtues Week 10: Cleanliness

This is the tenth in a series of articles about Benjamin Franklin's virtues:


"Tolerate no uncleanliness in body, clothes, or habitation."

I'm often a little surprised by how people show up for work these days.  Wearing a shirt that looks like it's been slept in, flip-flops, and three days growth on their face.  Then they complain about their job.

We may live in a more relaxed society than we once were, but don't fool yourselves that appearance is no longer important.  How we present ourselves is just as important as ever, and first impressions are still hard to overcome. If you present yourself as a disheveled disaster, that's the idea people are going to get about you.  And as relaxed as our society is, I still don't see a time when a big cobra tattoo on your neck isn't going to hold you back in the business world.

Having a good appearance not only helps to make a first impression, but it makes us feel good about ourselves.  It makes us feel more confident.  It tells our co-workers and our employers that we take our work seriously.  As a wise manager once told me, "you don't dress for the job you have, you dress for the job you want."
Think about that tomorrow morning as you're getting ready for work.

This is one of a series of Wednesday postings that examine the 13 Virtues Benjamin Franklin believed necessary to achieve moral perfection.  You can find all the related articles by searching the blog under the “Franklin’s Virtues” label.

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