#215 How do they choose a winner at the Best Dressed Businessman Awards? “Find out how much they bloody spend…”

The Bill and Ben Party‘s Ben Boyce.

“What’s this all about?”
said Working Style’s managing director Chris Dobbs. “It’s a bit of a marketing jolly, a night to push my brand, funnily enough. And to acknowledge those guys who get it right. Celebrating the men who go the extra mile in this increasingly casual world.” So the sixth annual Best Dressed Buinessman Awards were opened, and it proved to be a night of laughs… with a few slick suits thrown in for good measure.

Mr Wellington: Peter Standish.

Mr Auckland: Peter Huljich

Mr Christchurch Mayor Bob Parker.

Being a man of the political arts, (him, not me) I asked Mayor Parker some political questions. Who’s going to win the election? “John Key. But it’ll be very close.” So you don’t think Helen has one more left in her? “She’s been an incredible politician. Nine years, it’s a long time. Labour’s never done it before. I met with John Key recently and he impressed me.” Well, he is from Christchurch as well. “(Laughs) Maybe that’s why!”

Mr New Zealand Dr Hylton LeGrice. “It’s refreshing to learn a few tricks after 21 years in the game from a master of the art,” said Dobbs.

When I first heard about the Working Style award, I was dubious – how could a suit company fairly judge a national best dressed businessman award? I needn’t have concerned myself. Chris Dobbs wasn’t shy to admit his bias, which was met with a roar of laughter from the crowd: “How do we find our winner? Find out how much they bloody spend with you! In 2002 we did that too!” But it wasn’t all slanted (just). Yes, three out of the four winners were loyal Working Style customers. But the fourth, Peter Huljich (of Top Hat meat fame) had never set a foot in a store until this morning – and those feet walked out in a new pair of shoes (which he wore tonight).

Dr Parma Nand – next year’s Mr Auckland?

Hamish McKay accepting his custom-made jacket.

The most exciting moment came from political hopefuls Bill and Ben, who presented MC Hamish Mckay with a jacket emblazoned with their now famous I HEART COCK! bumper stickers. McKay had earlier complained that: “I’ve never been nominated for this award, in fact my tie’s already been criticised tonight. I did make it onto David Hartnell’s Best Dressed List in 2002 though, obviously TV3’s makeup department do a good job.”

No word yet on whether he’ll make the cut for next year’s nominations but with a jacket like that, he’s sure to get nominated for something.

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