I like to wear boldly colored, knee-length dresses at my in-person presentations. Yellows and reds are favorites! I add cheerfully colored heels, accessories, and bright lipstick. The finished appearance enhances my confidence.
Research has shown that our clothes broadly impact how we feel about ourselves and interact with those around us. Sharp attire can give you a positive energy that others notice. It illuminates you, whereas wearing shoddy clothing makes you disappear and miss out on opportunities.
In short, we can strategically choose clothing to craft our desired experiences. And we can use technology in the same way. Our tech stack can propel our careers forward — or hold us back from our goals. That’s why it’s important to curate your tech stack as you might curate your closet.
Curate Tech With Purpose And Style
Just as we craft a visual presentation of ourselves to the world through our clothing choices, we can also make a conscious decision about the technologies we use to present ourselves online, in the workplace, and in everyday life.
Question loudly, “Who do I want to be? How do I want to present myself?”
[INSERT YOUR ANSWER HERE.]
Then, take the necessary actions to become that person. It’s similar to the old adage to dress for the job you want. The idea here is to outfit your career with the tools that empower you to adapt and perform at higher levels.
For example, cell phones and laptops are as commonplace as T-shirts and jeans. Without them, many of us would be lost. You may also:
- Iron out any client relationship wrinkles with a matter management system that coordinates all your client and matter details the way you might color-code your pants, shirts, jackets, ties, and shoes.
- Adopt a contract management platform that updates your contract templates like a personal stylist does with your wardrobe.
- Pair a project management tool with e-signature software as if you’re pairing a suit with a shirt and tie to create a complete solution.
The right tech tools can make you look like a superstar. Don your advanced tech knowledge like a superhero cape! Or sport your tech skills with the comfort and ease of yoga pants and baseball caps. It all depends on how you define yourself.
And remember, shopping is far from a one-time event. Many of today’s professional career goals require continuous learning to keep up with constant change. Questions to ask when filling your technology closet include:
- Does the technology fit me well in all the areas it needs to?
- Will it help me feel confident and stay relevant?
- Will it give me the edge to stand out from the crowd?
You can always add a trendy item or two for variety. But don’t waste too much time on fads. Make smart choices that support short, midrange, and long-term goals. This timeless approach to the digital age will serve us on all occasions, like a little black dress or a navy blazer.
What does your tech style say about you? What does it say about your career?
Olga V. Mack is the VP at LexisNexis and CEO of Parley Pro, a next-generation contract management company that has pioneered online negotiation technology. Olga embraces legal innovation and had dedicated her career to improving and shaping the future of law. She is convinced that the legal profession will emerge even stronger, more resilient, and more inclusive than before by embracing technology. Olga is also an award-winning general counsel, operations professional, startup advisor, public speaker, adjunct professor, and entrepreneur. She founded the Women Serve on Boards movement that advocates for women to participate on corporate boards of Fortune 500 companies. She authored Get on Board: Earning Your Ticket to a Corporate Board Seat, Fundamentals of Smart Contract Security, and Blockchain Value: Transforming Business Models, Society, and Communities. She is working on Visual IQ for Lawyers, her next book (ABA 2023). You can follow Olga on Twitter @olgavmack.