The popular series has begged us to ask: what exactly is an all-American man anyway? What does a marketer or a sales shark look like? The days are over when suiting up for work, hand-picking knockout secretaries, and drinking on the job (24/7) was the MO. (Of course, some of those tidbits still happen in some companies and some regions).
Nowadays sales professionals are more concerned with their call center stats, predictive analytics, or cloud data programs. However, that doesn’t mean everything from the Mad Men days is a fond memory. There are plenty of Draper-era career and style tips that work today.
Sometimes drinking on the job is a necessity (and even a perk) when it comes to career-advancing socialization. However, there’s a lot more to it than meets the eye. Keep it simple and order a scotch, at least fifteen years old, and neat if you want a safe bet and it’s after five o’clock. In some countries, the idea that you toast to seal a business deal is still in effect. If your deal is with a Korean, consider soju. If they’re German, try a beer. A little research into the person’s drink of choice is always beneficial.
Check out these other Mad Men-esque tricks that can get you noticed in the right way.
Sexual harassment is, unfortunately, a stark reality and it’s always best to keep pace with a company’s codes of conduct. Sometimes, it can feel like there’s a gray area. What’s the difference between sexual and non-sexual harassment, anyway? It might vary employer to employer.
However, when you’re out of the office and interested in talking up someone new or injecting some romance into your marriage, take a cue from the old school. Project confidence, be generous with the compliments, and don’t be afraid of words like “gorgeous.”
Surprisingly, not many men regularly open the door for women. This includes the car door for your wife of ten years or the door at the doctor’s office to that woman who could be your mom right behind you. Practice makes perfect so make a conscious effort to stand when a woman comes back to the table, wait until she picks up the fork first, and turning your phone off and putting it away when on a date.
Pulling It All Together
Some viewers watch Mad Men solely for the clothing. What’s in that for you? It means if you tap into your inner Draper, all eyes will be on you. Get started with the suit.
This is one key item that you shouldn’t skimp on. Invest in a quality, tailored suit in either black, gray, or navy without any patterns. Both flat front pants and pleats are now in style so go with whichever is most comfortable. This is likely the most important style investment you’ll ever make.
Men Need Accessories, Too
Accessories aren’t just for women. Nothing ruins an incredible suit like the wrong pair of shoes. The tell-tale sign of poor quality shoes is a chunky look with an “edge.” The sole of the shoe should be slim and not stick out much (if at all) beyond the top of the shoe. Shoes are just as important as the suit itself.
Other key accessories you need are a good watch, cufflinks, and a tie. A timepiece can be classic while still being fun and unique if that’s what catches your eye. When it comes to ties, every man should own a subdued red to convey power and a classic patterned tie for everyday wear. Try to stick to classic shapes in silver or gold for cufflinks and steer clear of the too-quirky options.