4 Crucial Job Skills We Can All Learn from NY Fashion Week (Yep, Even Guys)

Last week, I made the case that guys and girls benefit from playing fantasy football.

This time, I will try to convince you that everyone can get better on the job by observing top designers at New York Fashion Week.

Gentlemen, bear with me. I promise I’m not pandering to the female audience because I owe ‘em one. The titans of American fashion rose to the top because they understand what it takes to be truly great.

Here are four designers at NY Fashion Week and the skills that set them apart.

1. Tracy Reese — Don’t let success slow you down

Remember Tracy Reese? She’s the one who designed Michelle Obama’s dress for her big speech at the Democratic National Convention. Reese could have spent a month toasting her success but instead got right back to work prepping for the fashion show. Her clothes are a hot commodity right now, and there’s little time for self-congratulation.

2. Victoria Beckham — Double-check your work

Beckham says she checks her designs multiple times — and from multiple angles — before they’re ready for the runway. Too often, we hurry through the review process even though a few glaring typos can ruin a business presentation. A strong finish is a must.

3. Thakoon — Don’t take yourself too seriously

This week, designer Thakoon Panichgul showcased a dress with a birdcage print. Apparently, in the fashion world that’s comedy. And that means Panichgul has a sense of humor — even on his industry’s grandest stage. People respond to talent and ambition, but they also respect a person who can laugh at himself.

4. Alexander Wang — Under-promise, Over-deliver

Wang surprised the crowd with an unexpected final parade of nine models whose clothes glowed in the dark when the lights went out. The audience didn’t see it coming, and that was probably by design. In the business world, clients only expect the work you promise them. If you go above and beyond, they’ll be overjoyed by the extra effort (even though you had it planned all along).

Don’t ask me to critique the actual clothes unveiled this week in Manhattan. The only thing I know is that next year is all about skin.

Bare midriffs? Bra-style tops?

See, guys? New York Fashion Week has our name all over it.


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