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Image consulting is a relatively new industry, but it is growing at a phenomenal pace. This industry is not only exciting, but it has a lot to offer in terms of career opportunities. Most image consultants are self-employed entrepreneurs today and work independently to conduct workshops, deliver seminars and provide services to individuals, corporates and clients.
What is image consulting?
Simply put, image consulting is a profession of improving the personal and professional image of a person. Image consulting involves a comprehensive process of guiding, mentoring, training and educating people on how best to present themselves through appearance, behaviour and communication to make a powerful impact on others.
Where does the opportunity lie?
The first time we meet people, we subconsciously judge them on three factors — personality, authority and intelligence — in just seven seconds. What makes us so quick in our judgement? Obviously, their dressing and presence.
Everybody wants to make a good first impression. So, there lies the opportunity for image consultants — an opportunity to change people’s lives for the better.
The need to look good and carry a powerful personality is growing day by day. That’s why image consulting is one of the hottest growth market segments among the image and fashion industries and there is a growing need for image consultants today.
That said, 90% of India needs to work on managing their image and developing soft skills that are needed for their personal and professional success. So, you can imagine the potential image consulting has as a profession.
Who can become an image consultant?
Do you have an inner calling to transform people’s lives?
Do you have a great sense of style and understanding of clothes?
Are you warm and empathetic toward others?
Do you like to lead and is open to challenges?
Then, you can be an Image Consultant.
The topmost skill you need to have is the intent to help others. Your passion then comes through in your work — you provide the best solutions to your clients. And that’s the quality which will help your business not only grow but prosper to new heights.
What professional certificate/degrees you should have to be an image consultant?
The best part of becoming an image consultant is that it is not bound to any academic discipline, work experience or age. There are no standard education qualifications to be an image consultant.
But, it’s a challenging field.
You need to be a master to be successful in your profession as an image consultant. But, mastering the image consulting industry is a huge challenge! It requires hard work, positive thinking and knowledge of psychological, physical, social and artistic aspects of the image. That’s big!
If you have a degree or experience in marketing, public relations, mass communications, fashion, human resources management, hair and beauty therapy, etc., that will help. But, that’s not enough to be an expert!
To be an expert at what you are doing, you need to go through a professional image consulting course through a renowned image consulting business institute.
There are image consulting certification programs available. These programs cover image consulting, soft skill training and effective communication skills. The image consulting courses also include training on clothing portfolios, fashion design and body types.
What are the future prospects and job availability of an image consultant?
The beauty of this field is that there is a plethora of options an image consultant can explore.
If you are interested in working in the movie industry with celebrities, you can choose to be a celebrity stylist.
If you want to help women shop for clothes that would look great on them, you can make that your career. You can evaluate their wardrobe and provide personal shopping services.
If you are interested in public speaking and sharing good practices, you can conduct image management training sessions at corporates and educational institutions.
If you prefer one-to-one interaction, you can give consultation services to clients and provide them solutions on body shape evaluation, colour analysis and how to look the part.
How much does an image consultant earn?
If you are a master of the product you are selling, then salary is never a constraint. It all depends on you — your intent, your passion and your preparation. It may vary as it depends on the type of clients you work with and how many hours you invest. Most image consultants gain enough experience in the field and start on their own.
An award-winning Image Management Professional, Suman Agarwal has helped students, home-makers, women on sabbatical as well as people seeking second career alternatives to explore Image Management and Soft Skill Training as a vibrant professional choice. She frequently writes blog posts about the urgent need of image consulting professionals and soft skill trainers in the 21st century and loves guiding people in exploring lucrative career options. Write to her at firstname.lastname@example.org to seek advanced career guidance.