From file "025_rcs" entitled "Selling3.qxd" page 01
Credit: Courtesy A Cut Above From file "025_rcs" entitled "Selling3.qxd" page 01

Randy Dorsing doesn't claim image is everything, but the sales manager for A Cut Above in Portland, Ore., does believe that the way salespeople and crew members look makes a huge difference in how they're perceived. So, for the past five years, all company employees have worn clothes that prominently feature A Cut Above's logo.

“The clothes lend credence,” Dorsing says. “They say something about how proud we are of who we are.”

Corporate Cat Walk The company spends between $15,000 and $20,000 each year on clothes for its 75 crew members, four production managers, and five salespeople, and orders whatever it needs from a firm that specializes in logo wear. Everybody gets collared shirts in both short and long sleeves. Salespeople get jackets and sweaters. Installers and other production employees get rain gear, baseball caps, and hard hats.

When A Cut Above first mandated the logo look, shirts were either gray or black. “Now salespeople choose what they think will look best,” Dorsing says. “As long as we can see the logo, we let them run with that.” These days, shirts show up in shades of yellow and blue, too. Salespeople wear blue or black jackets; sweatshirts are gray; rain gear is green; hard hats are white; and baseball caps are black.

Smart Casual Although A Cut Above has no figures on leads or sales that resulted directly from wearing clothing with the company logo on it, comments about how professional employees look are frequent. “It's like wearing your business card,” says Dorsing.

And it works much in the same way as handing out your business card. Recently, Dorsing was at a meeting in a restaurant — wearing his logo — when someone asked him to drive down the street to see a condo project to bid on. “Now we're looking at doing a $200,000 project for them,” Dorsing says.