Published: 07th February 2018
Changing the lives of people by shaping the way they are perceived
An image consultant aims at analysing an individual’s behaviour in public and assists them in moulding themselves to perfection to adapt in a changing social environment
It is the basic nature of a human being to be affected and concerned by how others treat us on a daily basis. This is exactly why being an image consultant is of huge social significance, especially nowadays. As long as you are in the business of dealing with people, you will be concerned about the impression you leave through your professional conduct, body language and interpersonal relationships.
Many people realise that these skills are missing in them which is precisely why they hire a professional image consultant to work on themselves. I have had so many clients take up my services because their professional growth was stagnating or they were not able to bag that coveted promotion due to lack of presentation skills or other such reasons. Hiring the right image consultant can ensure social and economic growth for people in their personal as well as professional life.
Splitting image: Shreya is a certified International Image Coach who founded 'Your Image and I'
Being an image consultant is quite rewarding in today’s professional world. Corporate professionals have never been more particular about their professional image as they are now. Gone are the days when people only focused on their technical abilities. At every stage of their career, professionals are beginning to realise the importance of self-presentation and personal development. Companies are now increasingly investing in their employee’s professional image because we live in a world were impressions matter. Most of us interact with our foreign counterparts or clients in the US, Europe, Singapore and other countries. So, there is no doubt that the demand for image consultants is only going to increase in the years to come.
When this profession was budding about eight years back, there were only a handful of consultants in India and that too, in selected metro cities like Delhi and Mumbai. Compare that to today and you have hundreds of practising image consultants in all major metros and other important cities of the country. This service is no more just restricted to the working class in the metros, but housewives, people looking to get married, someone wanting to restart their career and small to medium business owners are all hiring image consultants to do better and be better in their lives.
Earlier, there used to be celebrity image consultants whose services were available only for the rich and famous. Today, even a regular middle-class individual has access to this exclusive service, which truly is a mark of real growth and prosperity of our country.
It is a fascinating profession full of opportunities and uncertainties. When I entered this profession around seven years ago, I remember no one around me knew who an image consultant was, let alone what they did. But just like every profession, if you hold on to it and never give up learning, this profession can be highly rewarding. The key is to keep learning and pushing oneself. Being someone’s coach or trainer requires lots of patience, practice and charisma. I always tell people that I was my own first client. Had image consulting not changed me as a person, I wouldn’t have been the successful consultant I am today. Whatever I teach people, I first test on myself.
(Shreya Dhingra is a certified Counselling Psychologist, a certified International Image Coach (Asia, Africa and the Middle East) and a Personal Branding Consultant to over 200 individual clients, some of whom are lawyers, doctors, architects, senior corporate executives and authors. An MBA graduate, she comes with corporate experience in retail, marketing, media and over six years of training and consulting experience. As the founder of Your Image and I, Shreya trains in renowned Indian and international companies. On September 2017, she won the Women Achiever’s Award, an honour conferred upon her by the Government of Karnataka. Shreya was also recognised among the top 20 practising image consultants in India by The Times of India in the year 2014 and amongst the top 50 Elite Image Coaches in India by The Image Consulting Institute in the same year)