Being a part of the Amperage family for about four months now, I have attained a wealth of knowledge from marketing to Web design and everything in between. However, one area that may still be lacking is my sense of fashion.
In the upbeat and energetic atmosphere at Amperage, a button up shirt and a pair of khakis perfectly suits our culture. Professional, but not outdated. Creative, but not over the top. However, few days you will find me pacing the office without a tie. A bit over the top? Possibly, but I hope this blog assures you I am more than an intern fulfilling a Mad Men fantasy.
My Tie, My Brand
My Amperage internship has been a journey through brainstorming sessions, client meetings, even a company merger, all focused on establishing brand identity. Too often brands are confused with a sharp design, colorful logo, or catchy tagline, but I learned first-hand that a brand expands beyond any single component. A brand embodies the key messages, designs, and unique qualities of a company. A successful brand creates both a functional and emotional connection with your audience, and ultimately, serves as a promise of value.
So where does a piece of fabric dangling from my collar come into this? I believe my inclination to wear a tie demonstrates my ‘promise of value’ to Amperage and myself. I can already tell what you’re thinking, “this kid is such a kiss up,” but that is far from my intention. My tie really reflects who and what I am, rather than anyone I am attempting to be.
Why I Wear a Tie #1 – Confidently Stand Out:
I may be on the receiving end of a few jokes, but that perfectly suits the lively Amperage culture. Whether Steve asks for ID when I show up without a tie, or Shelby compliments my professionalism, I enjoy being an individual. Similar to my attire, a company’s brand must convey a unique quality to their desired audience. What are your values and missions and how do you consistently deliver that message?
Whether you view the tie positively or negatively, a majority would say it reflects who I am. Numerous opportunities are born from standing out and showcasing your value, so take advantage. “Hard working intern with a tie” still has nice ring to it, right?
Why I Wear a Tie #2 – Walk with a Purpose
As an Amperage intern, it’s incredibly important to stay hungry and walk with a purpose. Instead of writing this post, I could be surfing the internet, but what would that say about my brand? Everything in life is a choice, and every choice has an outcome. Wearing a tie seems to convey the desired outcome I aim to achieve, where I am a young professional first and a University of Iowa intern second. In reality they are one in the same, but I believe my degree of professionalism correlates with the amount of responsibility I am given. Of course simply wearing a tie will not change an entire persona, but a brand identity “says” a lot without physically saying anything.
Why I Wear a Tie #3 – Respect Given, Respect Returned:
Every day at Amperage, I have a group of coworkers that welcome me as part of the family. A group with a surplus of work on their plate, yet every person takes time out of their schedule to ensure I attain valuable knowledge. Being a hands-on learner with previous internship experience, I cannot begin to explain the value of being included. I am not asked to contribute, I am expected to. This style of atmosphere deserves my upmost respect, as our staff could just as easily pile up meaningless busywork. I figure a professional presentation, both through attitude and appearance, is the least I can do demonstrate my respect for the company and myself.
Let’s Tie this Up
My ties are more than just a piece of fabric swinging from my collar. The tie connects my daily attire with an over-arching brand identity. Whether your company’s brand needs to be developed, implemented, or reinforced, remember “the tie guy’s” message. A brand is more than a logo or tagline, it’s an identity that customers associate with your product or service. Controlling that identity rarely is a simple process, but in the end, can make all the difference in how current and potential customers perceive you.