What does your clothing say about trust?
In Australia we are in the middles of an election campaign and a controversial former Prime Minister this week caused a bit more controversy through his choice of necktie.
Kevin Rudd wore a blue tie while he was out campaigning with another candidate. A lot has been said in the media about what the choice of colour meant. The day before, our female Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, had warned that after the coming election, the country could be run by men wearing blue ties. Note that blue is the official colour of the Liberal Party who are currently in opposition but likely to win the election. Some viewed Kevin’s blue tie as a threat to Julia (even though they belong to the same political party). Kevin claimed that he wore it only because his wife had packed it in his suitcase for him.
A bit has also been written this week about what our choice of clothes says about us. The agreed upon view is that blue signifies dependability, trustworthiness and loyalty.
Red suggests aggression and emotion, black authority, pink compassion.
All this talk was about politicians but the same applies to people in any job, including teachers and school leaders. Maybe this is why police officers’ uniforms are blue in many cities.
Trust develops over long periods of time and through repeated interactions. Once we have established a trust relationship with someone, it shouldn’t be affected by our choice of clothing.
But our first impression of someone or their first impresssion of us could be affected by the colour of our clothing, not only by our words and actions.
When the next school year starts, I think I’ll wear something blue on the first day and whenever I’m in the position of trying to convince a group of teachers or parents that technological change is a good thing, I’ll definitely wear blue!