Yesterday, my startup partner and I met with two techno geeks to talk about our venture. I wanted them to have a sense of the amazing moment of transformation that occurs for my clients for two reasons. First, I wanted these techno geeks to connect with the big result of my process. I needed them to connect with what I do on a human scale. Second, they needed to know how our startup venture significantly differs from my consulting practice.
I told them the most recent story as an example of that amazing moment of transformation. Their eyes lit up.
During the first few hours of working with my client in his closet, I obliterated about 90% of his shirts, knitwear, and jeans. I knew that the next time I would see him, and continue plowing through the remainder of his existing wardrobe, he would absolutely need to see some new clothes. Sure he would have plenty of room to hang new things. And, he absolutely cannot be naked. But, what he really needed to see was the new direction his wardrobe would take.
Sure enough, late last week, I brought him seven shirts, three pairs of jeans, three pairs of chukka boots, and two belts. Only one pair of raw denim jeans that were too stiff for his comfort level went back. I also learned from him that he’d be attending two upcoming weddings and needed clothes suitable for each. By Saturday afternoon, we had it all done.
Back at his home on Friday, I invited him to try on a pair of jeans, a shirt, a pair of chukka boots, and belt to make an outfit. He tried it all on, came out to show me as I waited like an expectant fashion father, impatiently pacing in the room, waiting for my client to give birth to his newfound sense of self. It was a “Eureka” moment. Unfazed, needing to see more, I had him try on a second pair of jeans, another shirt, one of the other chukka boots, and coordinating belt. He came out of the trying on area, and I found him standing tall, prideful, and secure.
I asked him then, “How are you feeling so far?”
His answer was proof of that amazing moment of transformation taking place. He said, “Joseph, you took my fuzzy future and just made it crystal clear.” This was one of the most amazing comments I’d ever heard, and I’ll never forget it.
When you’ve been doing something for as long as I have, dressing people for something like twenty-six years, it’s easy to have two things happen. I’m at the top of my game. What I do just works. There’s no questioning it. The second is that I’m not just the expert in the room. I’m a human being with an emotional bond to the client, and cannot believe what just happened.
As a professional, I see proof that I help people have that amazing moment of transformation. But, as a human being, I feel that I am baring witness to something beyond my scope.
I’m not selling myself short. Far from it. At yesterday’s meeting, I wanted to illustrate to the techno geeks that my process of helping people have that amazing moment of transformation. It’s like a wave of energy that comes through me. Years of training were required for this. It never gets old. It’s always fresh. And, it always floors me.
I’m not sharing that amazing moment of transformation from the client’s and my perspectives to brag. I want to let you in on something that happens time after time after time. I want to shed light on how special this is for the clients, as much as it is for me, each in our own ways.
This gift of being the channel through which that amazing moment of transformation happens is a never-ending source of fulfillment. I feel lucky and blessed to help and bare witness to these moments when a person reclaims his life. This is about much more than clothes. It’s about making the client’s mind, body, and spirit safe to be the best visual version of who he is inside and out.
Joseph Rosenfeld helps successful Silicon Valley technology entrepreneurs and executives discover their personal brands and design their personal styles. Get Joseph’s free report that helps you know “6 Secrets to Success in Silicon Valley”. Need immediate and fast help? Learn about 1:1 private, intensive, and comprehensive 1-2 day VIP program designed to transform your personal brand and style in record time.