Is Black a Good Work Wardrobe Colour?

I love black! It is mysterious, chic and intriguing. And it is the perfect colour to wear any time you want to look dramatic, especially in a social setting.  But is it a good colour to wear to work? The answer is… it depends on what message you want to convey.

Black being the darkest colour is also the most authoritative colour. If you want to come across commanding and have others follow direction that you give without question, black is definitely your colour.  However, that might not always work in your favour. What about those occasions when you are trying to create rapport and you want interaction? Looking authoritative can be good, but in this situation it might be over-kill. Because black is such an authoritative colour, it can also be very intimating.

If you like black but still want interaction with others here are my suggestions:

  • When interacting with clients or subordinates break up the black. Instead of dressing in head to toe black, wear black dress pants and a coordinating jacket in a different colour or the other way around.
  • Keep the black suit for those times when you are interacting with others in top leadership positions.
  • If you want to come across authoritative but a little more approachable, try navy instead. In navy you will still maintain an appropriate level or authority and others will trust that you can do the job. However, because blue is the colour of trust, others will trust that they can open up and ask questions.

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