Signs of spring are popping up everywhere. In some places tulips are blooming while in others snow is melting after a long winter. Rain is pouring from the sky and the days are getting longer. Taxes are in and students are graduating. Spring is here and summer is just around the corner. For Dietitians the signs of spring are embellished with state association meetings, membership renewal, internship matches, and new grads entering the job market. This is the time of year we (RDs) should put our best foot forward and networking should be at a seasonal high.
While networking is important not only to make a good first impression but also to continue that perception each time you gather together with other professionals. It is important that during a casual part of the year when people are ready to put on their flip-flops and city shorts that we save them for the right time and place. Save the casual sandals and leggings for the mall. While networking at annual meetings keep your clothing professional. I talk to Registered Dietitians from different generations, experience, and backgrounds often with different opinions on appropriate professional attire. You may meet a hiring manager that thinks panty hose and closed toe shoes are still necessary for professional attire (I cannot say I agree but I am not the one hiring you). I think a safe middle ground is appropriate. Over the last 11 years as a recruiter I have talked to a lot of professionals who have strong opinions on the importance of dressing professionally. From your future hiring manager, and me, to you, it is best to dress professionally while networking with professionals at meetings.