The James Agency stands out as one of Scottsdale’s best firms to take your business to if you want to take your company to the next level. This boutique firm specializes in updating Web pages, creating billboards and even completely rebranding companies and their respective logos. The James Agency prides itself in its laid-back vibe, while still remaining completely professional and productive. But behind every successful business stands an innovator behind the scenes making it all possible, right? At The James Agency, Veronique James serves as not the only the brains, but also the beauty behind the operation.
On The James Agency’s website, James is pictured in a gray, scoop-neck sweater dress, accessorized with a mischievous wink on her face. Right off the bat, you notice she isn’t a woman who takes herself too seriously; but then you delve into the “show and tell” section of the website and see all of the meticulously created logos and advertisements for which James, and her team, of course, is responsible.
But we’re curious: How does a woman who has so much on her plate incorporate style and fashion into her busy life?
Q&A with Veronique James
Scottsdale Living (SL): You don’t seem like the run of the mill, pantsuit-wearing businesswoman. Would you say that you like to have a little more fun with the way you dress compared most successful business owners?
Veronique James: On days I have meetings with new clients, I definitely put my “big girl pants” on. But for the most part, clients expect us to be casual since we are a creative firm. We don’t have a dress code here at TJA (The James Agency). As long as the dress is conservative and not too over the top, I am cool with anything. I love my high heels and slacks, but I’m also a fan of flip flops and ball caps — it just depends on what the day calls for!
SL: If you had to sum up your style in three words, what would they be?
James: Personal style, that’s tough. I’m simple and classic in some ways but love the boho-chic look too. I’m a huge fan of torn jeans and platform shoes. I guess I am more eclectic depending on my audience and environment. On the weekends, I am much more of a laid-back dresser, and to be honest, I’m not a label girl, either.
SL: We noticed a really playful but professional vibe on your website. Would you say your style is reflective of the company you’ve created?
James: Absolutely. It was our intention that our website really convey the personality of the firm and not be an “online brochure” of fluffy copy and messaging that didn’t mirror the experience of working with us. As a new relationship progresses, of course we provide clients with collateral that covers the nuts and bolts of operations, policies and protocols. It is very important that we act like the business we want to be versus the business that everyone thinks it should be in the industry. So, we break a few rules here and there, but the formula has worked out well for us so far.
SL: When you know you’ll be going to have a long day at work, do you typically opt for comfort or style?
James: [Comfort] because every day for me is a long one. On average, I’m in the office until 8-9 p.m. every night, so it really just depends on the day. Our office is designed to be a comfortable place to work so even if I’m in a meeting outfit, I still feel really relaxed. I keep a pair of flip flops in my drawer (most of the girls do) for those days when heels just aren’t cutting it anymore. It’s always fun to see the girls in dress slacks or skirts running up and down the hallways in their Havianas!
SL: Do you think the way you dress is important when working in such a competitive market?
James: It is from a new-introduction standpoint. As a young woman in this male-dominant and very competitive industry, sometimes it can be difficult to garner the immediate level of respect from a potential client at first impression. I make sure to present myself in a professional and put together way when I’m meeting with an older demographic for the first time. Traditionally, it takes about 15 to 30 minutes for them to realize I know what I am actually talking about.
SL: You slept through your alarm and are running late to work. What is your go-to outfit?
James: Skinny jeans, riding boots and a long-torso tank top with a piece of big jewelry — whether it be a cuff or big earrings.
SL: Are there any pieces in your closet that you just can’t imagine your life without?
James: My closet is a pretty simple collection of basics that work really well together. I can’t think of just one off the top of my head, but I can say that if there was a shortage of jean material in the world, I may have a large panic attack.
SL: Your company creates one-of-a-kind events and parties for clients. What do you typically wear when you attend those?
James: Since we are typically running around prior to the start of the event with finishing touches and coordinating vendor logistics, a black dress that isn’t too formal and can be worn both pre- and post-event is usually the best bet.
SL: Say your company gets a client that happens to result in a huge payoff. Is there a certain handbag or pair of shoes that you would treat yourself to?
James: Only recently did I start appreciating the quality and comfort that comes with an expensive pair of shoes. My husband calls them “car payment shoes,” but I have a new affinity for Christian Louboutin’s!
For more information about Veronique James and The James Agency, visit thejamesagency.com.