Making an Impression

A passion for shopping and sales led Lisa Shorr to creating a personal branding business


As a child, Lisa Shorr would tuck herself out of sight to listen intently as her grandma Belle would command the attention of women gathered around the kitchen table to tell them about the latest skincare products. Belle was selling them more than just moisturizer; she was teaching them how to make their best impression. Inspired by her grandmother’s passion (and following in her footsteps), Shorr forged a successful career in sales, co-founding a tech business with her husband Eric. Over the course of nearly 30 years in the workforce, Shorr came to understand that sales, and business in general, is about more than just transactions. It’s about relationships, trust, and ultimately, building your own brand. With a desire to share her insights with other women climbing the corporate ladder, she launched Shorr Success in 2012, focusing on personal style and executive presence coaching.

Where did you get the idea to launch Shorr Success and how did you pursue this path?
My hobby has always been shopping with friends— I’ve always been the go-to person. “Lisa, what should I do? What should I wear?” I’ve been trained in cleaning closets, corporate imaging, personal branding, and communication skills. I went to Illustra Business Coaching and London Image Institute, both in Georgia, and studied with Roger Love, a renowned vocal coach. I’m a member of the Association of Image Consultants International and we have conferences – I’m always taking classes.

How has your professional experience influenced this new endeavor?
I’ve been in sales for more than 25 years and I’ve learned that sales is all about trust. People are loyal to people and that’s all about perception management – how we present ourselves. Perception is reality. In a distracted world where we are competing for attention, we need all of the influential skills we can muster. If we don’t pay attention to how we are presenting ourselves, we risk the possibility of being misunderstood and passed over for that promotion or not taken seriously in a sales or board meeting. How we present ourselves matters.

Whether in the workforce or not, many women can relate to feeling overwhelmed when it comes to what to wear and how to put your best foot forward. Where do you start?
I have cleaned so many closets that are overflowing with clothing that is old, does not fit, and worst of all, still has the tags on it! I am often hired because my client just does not know what is appropriate for their age or body type. To work together, our first step is to get to know each other, whether over coffee or the phone, and decide if we’re a good fit for each other. Then I have a questionnaire asking about everything from your career path and trajectory and what kind of feedback you’ve received in your reviews, to body type and goals. I can create three-, six-, or nine-month packages for clients. We can start with the closet and can then address how they want to present themselves. It’s important to start with your mindset and identify how we want to evoke positive change in our lives.

Can you give us some winter style pointers?

A few key tips: to deemphasize those areas that you love the least, emphasize or bring focus to the areas you love the most. If you carry your weight in the mid-section, then draw the eye up with an interesting collar or statement necklace. If you’re busty, stay away from turtlenecks — a turtleneck doesn’t provide a focal point for the eyes to land, so they end up focused on your chest. Shift that gaze up by wearing an open-necked shirt. If you get cold, add a scarf or necklace to have somewhere else for the eye to go to.

Any tips for men?
Go-to pieces can include a statement watch and coordinating belt to shoes.  I also love it when men have some fun with their socks! Here’s a great tip for men AND women: don’t get hung up on size. Instead, make good friends with your tailor. Good tailoring turns a sloppy appearance into a polished professional.

Andrea E. McHugh, So Rhode Island, South County, Rhode Island, Lisa Shorr, Shorr Success, Style, women entrepreneur, personal style coaching, executive presence coaching, first impressions, wardrobe, winter style pointers, fashion, women's fashion, SO Rhode Island, SO RI Mag, SO RI Magazine, SO RI, Rhode Island, South County RI, Southern RI, RI, Southern Rhode Island, South County Rhode Island


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