The post: What do you do as an image consultant?
Heo: In brief, my job is to manage your personal image by affecting your appearance and behavior, and we help you develop a strategy. For better marketing, people make a suitable strategy for their brand, and like this we also make a suitable image strategy for each person's character.
The post: I heard you were a stewardess before you became an image consultant. What made you become an image consultant.
Heo: I could visit many countries as a stewardess. When I visited other countries, I realized that the more a civilized country is, the gentler and kinder the people are. And they take care of their image more than a less civilized country. At that time, most Koreans didn't consider a personal image as important. They haven't thought about things like follow-up services as affecting the image of the business. Image helps the business to make a profit. I thought we must get changed to make an advanced country, so we must be gentler and kinder to give a good image to others. I wanted to make Koreans kinder and gentler and I thought I could do that.
The post: How do you give image consultation?
Heo: Most of our clients are business people who want to change their personal images. From those working for a big company like Samsung to the staff of a bank, many businessmen ask consulting to give their customer better service and to improve their images. Recently, the number of college students who prepare for job interview is increasing. For these students, we simulate job interview of their dream company based on resumes and cover letters. In this simulation, first we catch their good and bad habits and unconscious actions, and then give them suggestions, so they offer the interviewer a good personal image. We help the job seekers get rid of their bad habits and weakness. We also help them choose suitable hair and fashion style.
The post: As an image consultant, what do you think are Korean people's weakness?
Heo: Unlike other countries, I think Koreans, especially old Koreans, are poor at expressing themselves. They think it is not polite and arrogant to express how competent they are. So they want others to know how competent they are without directly expressing it. On the other hand, workers in a foreign company are quick to express themselves. From fashion style to their manner of speaking, they try to stand out. As you know, now is an age of limitless competition, you can not survive if you don't express how competent you are.
When I give college students image consultation, I find many young people have little consideration for others. Consideration for others is most important in communication. When they communicate with others, they have a superficial relationship rather than a sincere one. I think they don't know how important lasting relationship is in making your personal image. If you neglect to manage relationships with others, you will never give a favorable image.
The post: I heard you screened Korea's first astronaut. Could you tell us about it?
Heo: In the screening process for Korea's first astronaut, I lectured about manner and personal image and tested applicants for interpersonal skills, the ability to anticipate emergencies and how to advance their own opinion to others. The applicants, as you know, had great career and educational achievements, however, unlike what I had expected, many of them didn't have any idea about how they should deal with others. One of them didn't even know how to greet the judges. Yi So-yeon, Korea's first astronaut, had great career and educational achievements. Besides this she had a good sense of humor and a good general manner. She showed a favorable image to the judges, and was finally accepted as the first astronaut for Korea.
The post: Do you have any advice for students who want to be an image consultant?
To find your image and complete it, you need to have good insight to human nature. Image is not only the visible but everything about you like your passion, values, and characteristics. You must be sociable and friendly to get to know these things. And you must be able to talk with your clients honestly. If you don't do that, you can not give your clients a satisfactory image.
While we were talking with Ms Heo, she stressed the importance of interpersonal relations. "Managing your image starts with other people. You have to begin with the way that others see you. It is important to make high achievement in education, but it is more important to learn interpersonal skill with your seniors and juniors in school. It might also be a start in completing your image and human network.
Kim na-eun reporter email@example.com
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