When people go to the beach, there are certain types of clothing you’d expect to see them in, like bikinis (for the ladies) and swim trunks (for the guys). Those who go to a fancy restaurant typically dress up for the formal occasion– with ladies in pretty dresses and high heel shoes and men in sport coats and ties. Now how about auctions? Does it matter what you wear when attending an auction?
Think of it this way: it’s not every day you go to an auction, and if it’s for machinery, vehicles or property, chances are it’s going to be a big purchase– perhaps one of the biggest purchases of your life! People tend to dress up for big purchases.
Could Your Attire Help You Win Bids?
Does it really matter what you wear? Probably not. However, psychologically-speaking, it has been said that those who dress up for an auction can intimidate the others around them. For instance, if you were to show up at an auction in a suit and tie or fancy dress, it would communicate to the others that you were rich. Whether or not this was/is true, perception can sometimes be reality, right? So dressing “up” can give you, as a bidder, a psychological edge. It tells others you’re there to play the game and win. The fancier you dress the more confident you’ll feel and the more confident you’ll appear to your competition. Some people even go so far as to arrive at an auction in a luxury vehicle like a limo, complete with a driver who opens the door for them– this is all a way to nonverbally communicate they are “someone” to be noticed!
How about dressing down, then? This could actually work in an interesting way to make you appear like you don’t have money or confidence, such that no one thinks you’re their competition. While others who are conspicuously “dressed up” notice one another, taking their eyes off the prize, the person who dresses like a bum can shock the whole room with the winning bid! Furthermore, even if you were to “dress down” and not win, at least you felt more comfy than your competition with their stiff collars and tight shoes!